Domestic News in Brief

On June 18, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev signed the law “On amendments and additions to the National Budget for 2013-2015,” the Akorda’s press service reported. The law is aimed at specifying the macro-economic indicators of the country’s development in 2013.

According to information provided by the head of the media group on preparing and holding the 15th anniversary celebration of Astana, Zhanar Kolbachaeva, the people of Kazakhstan will have three days of rest for the Day of the Capital. Official events to celebrate the anniversary will begin on July 4 with a flag-raising and will last about 10 days. A detailed programme of the celebrations can be found on the official website of the capital in a special section. The overall programme of celebrations of the Capital Day consists of more than 100 events, including 20 concerts and festivals, about 50 street events, including sports, and Astana’s first 3-D mapping and light show, which will be held on July 6-8. The city will host about 20 cultural and educational events, as well as seven special campaigns for socially vulnerable segments of the population.

The Aral Sea, which has been shrinking for almost 50 years, causing an environmental disaster in Central Asia, has finally stopped drying up, a Russian scientist said on Tuesday. “The sea is currently close to a balance, because its surface has shrunk so much that evaporation has gone down too, so that even the insignificant river and underground water flows balance the sea,” Pyotr Zavyalov of the Russian Academy of Science’s Oceanology Institute told a panel of scientists. Divided between western Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan, the Aral Sea began shrinking in the 1960s following a massive diversion of water for agriculture use from the two main rivers that fed it.

The world premiere of the new opera and ballet theatre, Astana Opera, is scheduled for October 2013. It will open with Giuseppe Verdi’s “Attila,” Kazakh Minister of Culture and Information Mukhtar Kul-Mukhammed said at a meeting of the government. The new theatre opened its season on June 21 with Mukan Tulebayev’s classic national opera, “Birzhan and Sara,” directed by Yuri Alexandrov. The new theatre will stage Tchaikovsky’s “Sleeping Beauty” ballet on July 3 as part of the Day of the Capital celebrations.

16 cardiac surgery centres and departments have been put into operation in Kazakhstan over the past three years. Advanced technologies have been introduced and more than 20,000 operations have been performed, the Ministry of Health Care of Kazakhstan said. 20 stroke centres have been opened in the country for treating patients in accordance with international standards. 28 more centres will be opened by the end of the year. Currently, circulatory diseases cause more deaths and affect more people than any other disease in Kazakhstan. Previously, patients requiring cardiac surgeries were sent abroad, but now more than 1,500 open heart operations have been performed in the country.

About 15 million young carp were released in the Vyacheslav Dam lake in Akmola oblast, reported, citing the press service of Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Environmental Protection. Another 300,000 carp less than one year old will be released into the dam lake later this year. The measures are intended to increase the reservoir’s fish reserves as well as to form recreation areas for sport and amateur fishing near Astana, the press release said. This year’s plan is to release a total of over 158 million juveniles of such precious species as sturgeon, whitefish, carp, and grass and silver carp. The stocking is part of a project called Retaining and Reproduction of Fish Resources and Other Water Animals being implemented by fish breeding companies of the Fishery Commission of Kazakhstan’s Environmental Protection Ministry to supply the country’s water reservoirs with fish. Kazakhstan currently has 107 types of fish. By the end of the 1980s, the actual fish catch in the country’s water reservoirs was 85,000-95,000 tons, including 45,000-50,000 tons in the Ural-Caspian basin. In recent years the catch has been reduced by more than one half. Carp are a species of oily freshwater fish of the family Cyprinidae, a very large group of fish native to Europe and Asia.

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