Articles by Dmitry Babich

Zhambyl Zhabayev’s 175th Anniversary: a Poet of Steppes Who Outlived His (Almost) 100 years of Physical Life

Zhambyl Zhabayev is not just a great Kazakh poet, he became almost a mythical figure, uniting very different epochs. Even his life span is unique: born in 1846  he died on June 22, 1945 – weeks after the defeat of Nazism in Germany. He had only eight months more to live to celebrate his 100th…

The Election of Sadyr Zhaparov Lends New Hope for Greater Cooperation Between Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan

On the 10th of January 2021, Kazakhstan’s border state, Kyrgyzstan, elected its new president. Sadyr Zhaparov, 52, a former deputy of the Kyrgyz parliament, was elected the new head of state by 79 percent of the votes cast. Кazakhstan, which has long looked on with much concern at the political instability and internal strife in…

Elections in Kazakhstan: International Reactions

MOSCOW – International observers, foreign policy pundits and the world’s media – everyone is watching Kazakhstan’s parliamentary elections, noting the progress of this country’s relatively young democracy. With every election, the international community gets a wider and wider access to the information about elections in Kazakhstan: this time, Kazakhstan’s Central Election Commission accredited 398 foreign…

Nikolai Anastasiev, a Literary Figure that Brought Together Kazakhstan, Russia and the United States, Dies in Moscow

Nikolai Anastasiev, a well-known Russian philologist whose scientific interests included Kazakh, American and Russian literature, died in Moscow at the age of 81 years. This news filled with sorrow the hearts of many literature lovers in three countries: Kazakhstan, Russia and the United States. Anastasiev was both a longtime professor of the most famous Russian…

The Year of Abai – Just One Big “Who Could Have Thought?” With a Happy End

The life of Abai Kunanbayev, the greatest poet of Kazakhstan, has never been easy.  But only very few could have predicted what the coronavirus pandemic would do in the year 2020, which had been declared the year of Abai Kunanbayev in Kazakhstan. Some of the 500 cultural events scheduled for this year had to be…

Kazakhstan’s Independence Day: 29 Years Ago the World’s Countries Have Got a New Big Friend

Kazakhstan’s Independence Day, celebrated on December 16 to commemorate the fulfillment of the Kazakh people’s long-cherished dream of having an independent state, which happened on December 16, 1991, fills every heart in Kazakhstan with pride and joy now.  Kazakhstan is the most economically successful country in Central Asia on the right track towards becoming one…

The Secret of Nazarbayev

How can Kazakhstan’s leader gain respect on both sides of this world’s many barricades? A good question to answer on the Day of the First President.  On the Day of Kazakhstan’s First President political analysts, historians and just people with long memories, who remember what Kazakhstan has been through in the last 50 years –…

President Tokayev Addresses the SCO Summit: Emphasizes Collective Responses to Common Threats

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev chose the venue of the recent online summit of the  Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) for making several important statements. This authoritative international body, which includes Kazakhstan, China, Russia, India, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, was created in 2001 and will soon celebrate its 20th birthday. The organization, which includes some of…

The Power of Context: Abai Kunanbayev’s Translations Made European Literature Accessible to the Kazakh People

This year is marked by the celebration of the 175th anniversary of Kazakh poet and writer Abai Kunanbayev. Kunanbayev went on to become the first Kazakh classic writer famous not only for his works, philosophical treatises and music, but also as a translator, who popularized the masterpieces of world literature for a general audience. He…

Why Biodiversity Became the Centrepiece of Kazakhstan’s Agenda at the UN: the Tragic and Hopeful Story of the Aral Sea

When Kazakhstan’s Head of State, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev addressed online the United Nations’ General Assembly from the city of Nur-Sultan deep in the Eurasian steppes, his choice of subject might have appeared Quixotic to his listeners in the world’s most futuristic city on the other side of the Atlantic. The President did not speak about…