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Famous Kazakh Poet Says 'Too Much Independence Dangerous For Kazakhstan'

Famous Soviet-era Kazakh poet Olzhas Suleimenov says "too much independence will be dangerous for Kazakhstan."

Talking to RFE/RL on November 21, Suleimenov said the alliance with "the Great Russia established centuries ago" will be good for Kazakhstan's security.

Answering an RFE/RL question about possible loss of sovereignty by Kazakhstan as a member of Russia-led Eurasian Economic Union, Suleimenov said "if we are fully independent that will be a big danger for Kazakhstan."

Suleimenov, once an iconic Soviet poet and linguist, became extremely popular among Soviet minorities in the 1970s, after he wrote a book "Az i Ya," suggesting a Turkic origin of Russia's ancient manuscript "The Tale of Igor's Campaign."

Words from his poem "Earth, Bend to Man!" are inscribed on the tomb of Yury Gagarin -- the first man in space.

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    RFE/RL's Kazakh Service

    RFE/RL's Kazakh Service offers informed and accurate reporting in the Kazakh and Russian languages about issues that matter in Kazakhstan, while providing a dynamic platform for audience engagement and the free exchange of news and ideas.