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№17 (178) 13 - 26 September 2006

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It is time to turn the page
On August, 31 the city court of Almaty brought its verdict regarding the assassination of Sarsenbaev and his assistants. Alleged murderer Erzhan Utembaev ,the former head of the Senate apparatus was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Rustam Ibragimov, the former policeman faces the prospect of capital punishment. This execution is not practiced in Kazakhstan, our country imposed a moratorium on it. Therefore, Rustam Ibragimov is likely to spend a lifetime in prison. The verdict provoked an expected reaction. The opposition opines that proofs were fabricated, and the sentence is unjust as there are clear political motives behind it, lawyers insist that there were offences during investigation. Some even assume that Erzhan Utembaev is too insignificant political figure to launch a war against Sarsenbaev. The murder was ordered, but Utimbaev's role in this accident raises certain doubts.
Ex Pluribus ad unium
Two years ago EurAseC and CACO (Central Asian Cooperation Organization) practically formed a whole. It seemed that the idea of Central Asian cooperation was forgotten. Take a deep breath. Recently, it has been brought to the agenda again. The informal summit of Leaders of the Central Asian republics, which coincided with the official visit of I. Karimov to Kazakhstan, has brought a relief. Now there is a reason for optimism.

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