ASTANA – Kazakh citizens can cast their ballot at 77 polling stations opened in Kazakhstan’s diplomatic missions in 62 countries on election day today, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Roman Vassilenko said during an early morning briefing at the Central Communications Center on March 19.
Kazakhstan is holding parliamentary elections for the Mazhilis, the lower house of parliament, and maslikhats, local representative bodies.
Vassilenko announced that around 800 observers from 12 international organizations and more than 40 foreign countries are monitoring the election.
A total of 236 foreign journalists have received accreditation from the country’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs to cover the election.
Vassilenko said great interest from abroad is manifested in numerous publications which note the critical importance of the election as the nation completes the reset of its political system launched last year by the country’s president.
In a special press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announcing the vote in the early hours of March 19, Mukhtar Tileuberdi, Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Kazakhstan, said: “This is the most competitive legislative election in Kazakhstan’s modern history and it is a key step in building a Just and Fair Kazakhstan. It is a demonstration of how far our county has come on its journey towards greater participatory democracy. The mixed majority-proportional model has ensured that the entire spectrum of views and opinions of voters has been covered.”
Noting the substantial political reforms that have been implemented in the country recently, Tileuberdi added: “Significant work has been done in Kazakhstan in recent years on comprehensive political modernization. This election finalizes the transition from a super-presidential system towards the normative presidential system under a model, put forward by President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, of ‘a strong President, an influential parliament, and an accountable government.’”