Central Asia: Kazakh President Tokayev re-elected

Central Asia
Kazakh President Tokayev confirmed in office

President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev (r) before casting his own vote in Astana. photo

© Handout/Kazakhstan’s President Press Office/XinHua/dpa

Kazakhstan, which is rich in raw materials, is Germany’s most important partner in Central Asia. In the presidential election, incumbent Tokayev was confirmed in office for a further seven years.

In the oil and gas-rich ex-Soviet republic of Kazakhstan, head of state Kassym-Jomart Tokayev won the presidential election as expected, according to preliminary information. Tokayev was re-elected with 81.31 percent of the votes, the central election commission in Astana said.

The five opposing candidates only achieved results between 2.1 and 3.4 percent in the election on Sunday. However, 5.8 percent of voters ticked the “Against all” box on the ballot paper. Voter turnout was 69.4 percent, according to the Kasinform state agency.

Tokayev (69) faces a seven-year term after a constitutional amendment. Previously, the term of office was five years. Around twelve million people were called to vote on Sunday in the country bordering China and Russia. International observers from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) wanted to give their verdict on the election on Monday. They had previously criticized, among other things, restrictions on the registration of candidates for elections.

In March 2019, Tokayev ousted his authoritarian predecessor, Nursultan Nazarbayev, who had ruled Kazakhstan for around 30 years. In the June 2019 election, which was accompanied by police violence, Tokayev was elected with 70.96 percent.


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