27 April 1999
KAZAKH PREMIER CHAIRED CABINET SESSION.
RFE/RL correspondents report from Astana, that the Kazakh Prime Minister Nurlan Balghymbayev chaired Cabinet's session on 27 April. It was stated at the Session that the economic situation in the country, including such spheres as domestic goods production, export and foreign investments, in the first quarter of this year had been continuing to worsen. It was also reported by the officials of the Kazakh Finance Ministry that such a dramatic situation had been caused by the world's economic and financial crisis.
VALERYAN ZEMLYANOV'S PROPOSAL NOT SUPPORTED.
According to RFE/RL correspondents in Astana, on 27 April a member of the Kazakh Parliament's Lower Chamber - Mazhlis, Valeryan Zemlyanov harshly criticized the Kazakh Presidential visit to Washington DC. last week and called all the Parliament members to commemorate the Muslims and Serbs "killed by NATO airstrikes in Kosovo with a minute of silence." But Mazhlis members reportedly did not support the idea.
KAZAKH VETERANS OF CHERNOBYL MARKED THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE TRAGEDY.
RFE/RL correspondents report from Almaty that Kazakh veterans of the nuclear accident at Chernobyl Atomic Power station gathered at the 28 Panfilov Guardians Park in the former capital of Kazakhstan in order to mark the 13th anniversary of the tragedy. Thousands of Kazakhstanis had been sent by Soviet Kazakhstan's government to Ukraine in 1986 in the framework of a campaign on assistance in the liquidation of the consequences of the Chernobyl accident. Many of the Kazakhstanis who were send had never been warned about the real danger of the program and nobody had even been asked what they wanted. Bakhytzhan Batyrkhanov, a leader of the Chernobyl Veterans Union of Kazakhstan said at the press conference held on 26 April that the Kazakh government had forgotten about the needs and problems of the veterans, adding that many of them had died of cancer, and those who were still alive needed special treatment and financial support.
NEW DETAILS ON ACCUSATIONS AGAINST FORMER PRIME MINISTER.
Kazakh mass media quotes Kazakh Procurator General Yuriy Khitrin as having reported about accusations against Akezhan Kazhegeldin, the former Prime Minister of Kazakhstan. RFE/RL correspondents quote him as saying that the main accusation put forward by the Kazakh Procuracy against Mr. Kazhegeldin was about his late payment of taxes last year. Mr. Kazhegeldin allegedly received about $1 million as an honorarium for his book titled "Kazakhstan: Right to Choose". The Kazakh general Procuracy says that Akezhan Kazhegeldin paid the tax on that income (about $30 thousand) almost 6 months later than he was obliged to.
KAZAKH DELEGATION IN CHINA.
RFE/RL correspondent in Almaty reported on 26 April that a Kazakh delegation in China is making preparations for Kazakh-Chinese talks to be held on May 5. The talks concern China�s plan to divert some water from the Qara Ertis river, which flows through territory of China, Kazakhstan and Russia.
According to previous reports from Almaty, the talks in May will be continued in July and October, when Foreign Minister Qasymzhomart Toqayev and President Nursultan Nazarbayev will visit China.
PREPARATIONS FOR THE NEW MILLENNIUM.
A Kazakh State Committee On Preparations for the New Millennium has held its first session in Astana. The committee was founded according to a presidential decree issued on February 15. In an interview to RFE/RL, Kazakh State Secretary Abish Kekilbayev, who is chairman of the committee, stressed that Kazakhstan is starting the new millennium as a new independent state.
TIME FOR USING AN OLD SOVIET STYLE PASSPORT IS EXPIRED.
According to RFE/RL correspondent in Almaty, the period given by Kazakh authorities to allow Kazakhstani citizens to use their Soviet-era passports has expired. Now, there is a special fee for those who didn�t change their old style passport to the new one.