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Kazakhstan's Long-Awaited Leadership Succession Begins

Mar 19, 2019 | 21:48 GMT
Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev is pictured here on June 7, 2018, during a visit to Beijing.

Nursultan Nazarbayev has been Kazakhstan's president throughout its post-Soviet history. Despite his announced resignation, the 78-year-old leader will continue to wield power from behind the scenes.

(GREG BAKER -- Pool/Getty Images)

Kazakhstan's long-serving president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, resigned in a televised address on March 19. While Nazarbayev's resignation formally triggers a succession process, succession plans have been underway for a while now. And Nazarbayev will continue to serve as chairman of the National Security Council and head of the ruling Nur Otan party. The succession process is thus likely to be a managed and gradual one, with Nazarbayev balancing between various power factions, including family members, the energy and business elite, and the security guard....

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