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Kazakh President Appoints New Defense Minister


Nurlan Ermekbaev had served as presidential aide and Security Council secretary since April.

ASTANA -- President Nursultan Nazarbaev has appointed a new defense minister.

The presidential press service said on August 7 that Nazarbaev appointed Nurlan Ermekbaev to replace Saken Zhasuzaqov, who had served since September 2016.

No reasons for the replacement were given.

Ermekbaev, 55, had served as presidential aide and Security Council secretary since April.

Before that he was minister of religious and civil society issues.

In the past, Ermekbaev, who speaks Kazakh, English, Russian, Chinese, and Portuguese, served as Kazakhstan's ambassador to China and North Korea.

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