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Kazakhstan: Short News Items

Prague, 31 January 1997 (RFE/RL) - Our correspondent reports that Kazakh Prime Minsiter Akejan Kejegeldin met the Czech Ambassador to Kazakhstan Lubos Dobrovsky in Almaty yesterday. The Moscow-based Czech diplomat says Czech President Vaclav Havel has invited Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev to visit Czech Republic this year. Dobrovsky says Czech Premier Vaclav Klaus plans to visit Kazakhstan later this year. Among the issues discussed at the meeeting was a proposal to have Czech Skoda specialists in Kazakhstan to assist in building new automotive plants.

Kazakh Metal Workers Unpaid For Twelve Months

Workers at Kazakhstan's Jezqazgan non-ferrous metals plant in central Kazakhstan have been working without pay for the past 12 months.

Our correspondent in Almaty says more than 3,000 plant workers at the plant are on so-called "administrative vacation". According to the local tax control board, the plant owes the equivalent of nearly five million dollars to the state treasury as taxes.

The director of the facility blames the Kazakh government for the problems faced by the plant. He says the plant administration abrupty stopped paying its debts last year when South Korea's Samsung took over the facility.

Crime and Punishment Hits the Streets of Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan's State Investigation Committee has announced plans to start publishing a new bilingual Kazakh and Russian language daily titled "Crime & Punishment" later this year. The publishers say the paper will cover events in the field of criminal investigation and justice in Kazakhstan.