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Kazakh Opposition Parties Announce Merger

Party leaders Bolat Abilov (left) and Zharmakhan Tuyaqbay
ALMATY -- The leaders of two major opposition parties in Kazakhstan have announced a merger between their parties, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

Azat party leader Bolat Abilov and Social Democratic Party chairman Zharmakhan Tuyaqbay said at press conference in Almaty that the new united opposition party will be called the All-National Social Democratic Azat Party.

They said the founding congress of the new party will be held in Almaty on October 24.

The two parties merged in 2007 but decided to split later the same year after they failed to win seats in parliament.