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Bling Cake Wows VIPs At Nazarbaev Relative's Wedding In Kazakhstan


A screengrab of an elaborate Kazakh wedding cake, which weighed 1.5 tons and came with animatronic figures and a horse-drawn carriage.

The king of all wedding cakes -- more than three meters tall and weighing more than 1,500 kilos -- was unveiled at a star-studded wedding in Kazakhstan of a relative of omnipotent President Nursultan Nazarbaev.

The cake, which was made by famous Russian confectioner Renat Agzamov, depicted a fairy-tale-like super palace that had internal lighting and moving animatronic figures and a horse-drawn carriage.

It was presented at the wedding of a daughter of one of Nazarbaev's favorite nephews, Qairat Satybaldy, during the lavish party held in the southern Kazakh city of Shymkent around January 14. Qairat is the son of Nazarbaev's brother Satybaldy, who died in a car accident in 1981.

The bride's name was not reported in any media reports of the wedding -- nor was it mentioned that she was the daughter of Satybaldy, a wealthy businessman, former deputy director of the country's secret service, and ex-deputy mayor of the Kazakh capital, Astana.

But several people who attended the wedding told RFE/RL that the wedding was for Satybaldy's daughter, who married the grandson of Serikzhan Seitzhanov, a prominent businessman involved in the energy industry.

VIP Guest List

The wedding party was attended by many prominent Kazakh politicians and celebrities, VIPs from Arabic countries, and the U.S.-based, undefeated world middleweight boxing champion Gennady Golovkin.

A video of the event showed a horse-drawn carriage driving around the building to drop off a pair, representing the newly married couple, that walks up to the house and enters it, later appearing at a window.

One report said the cake cost $65,000, but cake maker Agzamov refused to disclose the final price.

There was a lot of negative reaction to the extravagant cake on social-media, with Erbulan Qazaq saying, "... I doubt that this amount so easily wasted could have been fairly earned.

Those who start their businesses from scratch and work hard to reach something will never throw [millions of tenges] into the toilet in one day."

Another, Aibar Anaiuly, said: "It's okay if the cake cost even 100 million tenges (about $310,000). The issue is [not the amount but rather that] the money should have been paid to Kazakhstan citizens [in making the cake]. The money should not have gone out of the country. It should have been distributed among our cooks, etc."

But the deputy chairman of the country's Mazhlis, Vladimir Bozhko, said people should not criticize the president's nephew, Qairat Satybaldy, as the cake, he claimed in an interview with today.kz, was paid for by his new son-in-law's grandfather, Seitzhanov.

"If he himself earned this money, why can he not spend it on the wedding?" asked Bozhko. "He has the possibility [to buy this cake]. What is his crime?"

CORRECTION: This story has been amended to clarify that the wedding was between Satybaldy's daughter and Seitzhanov's grandson.​

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    RFE/RL's Kazakh Service

    RFE/RL's Radio Azattyq has been an important source of information for people in Kazakhstan for decades. In 2009, Azattyq won the prestigious 2009 Online Journalism Award for "standing in defense of citizen’s rights to seek and receive information."

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