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Another Kazakh Oppositionist To Run For President

New presidential candidate Zhasaral Quanyshalin (center), chairman of the Long Live Liberty movement
ALMATY -- Another Kazakh opposition figure has announced plans to run for president in the 2012 elections, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

He is Zhasaral Quanyshalin, 61, a former parliamentary deputy and longtime critic of President Nursultan Nazarbaev. Quanyshalin is now chairman of the recently established Long Live Liberty movement.

Quanyshalin told journalists on November 3 that his election campaign program will be similar to that of Vladimir Kozlov, the leader of the nonregistered Algha (Forward) party.

Kozlov announced on October 22 he would run for president. Five days later, Kozlov and leading members of the Communist Party of Kazakhstan had eggs thrown at them during a press conference at the National Press Club in Almaty.

On October 28, Almaty tax authorities launched an investigation into Kozlov's finances, saying that he owes a large amount of unpaid taxes. Kozlov told RFE/RL that both the investigation and the attack against him at the National Press Club were connected with his announcement of plans to run for president.

Quanyshalin said that he and Kozlov reached an agreement that if on the eve of the election it is clear that one of them stands a better chance of winning, the other will withdraw and ask his supporters to vote for the other candidate.

A close aide to Nazarbaev said in September that the incumbent will run for a further presidential term in 2012.