Kazakhstan Recent History

Kazakhstan means “homeless people”. At the beginning of the 15th century, after the death of the great Mongolian leader Tamerlane, who decreed the ruin of the Mongolian empire, the Kazakh princes, merged with the Kazakhstan, began to fight each other.

Two of these princes, from the tribe of the Jucians, the brothers Ghirey and Gianibec, tired of enduring the oppression of the Khan of the Usbeki, fled to that area which was Turkestan, where the lord of the place assigned them a territory where they could live with the followed them.

According to Abbreviationfinder, an acronym site which also features history of Kazakhstan, in 1465 other fugitives joined them and became a large community. The neighboring peoples then called them “Kazaki”, precisely “homeless people”.

In a short time the community increased tenfold and at the beginning of the 16th century already more than a million people were present on the territory.

The real architect of this organization was the Khan Kassim (son of Gianibec), who died in 1520. At his death they were divided into three hordes: the average, the minor and the major, who were always at war with their neighbors. And this weakened them a lot, so much so that the Khan Tiavka in 1718 proposed his subjection to the Russian government, asking for help from Peter the Great. All this could have no effect because almost immediately the Khan Tiavka died and indeed the Kazakhs were driven out of Turkestan.

They were forced to head north and found themselves in contact with Russian possessions. Little by little, the Kazakhs, following wars also waged against the Chinese, found themselves having to wade between China and Russia and when the latter conquered the Kyrgyz steppes, some territories were also removed from the Kazakhs. They rebelled but Russia completely subdued them.

Then began a vast colonization of the area by the Russians and around 1900 many Russian settlers invaded the whole country and the Kazakhs saw their lands decrease again.

Kazakhstan Recent History

The discontent was great but their position did not allow for great subversions. When the Kazakhs received the right to elect a representative in the Duma in 1906, they naturally placed him in the opposition zone.

When the revolution broke out in Russia the Kazakhs became part of the Republic of Turkestan and after a few years, in 1925, they were able to have their own autonomous state which was organized as a republic.

Gradually the Kazakhs abandoned the nomadic state and settled in a permanent home. Thus they were able to dedicate themselves partly to agriculture, but more to raising cattle. They also practiced fishing and the most widespread trade among men, in addition to the various branches of the craft, was that of a carter, that is, a transporter of goods with wagons.

For a time, but in remote times, the Kazakhs professed the religion of “shamanism”, whose fundamental cult was that of the intermediary spirits between God and the world, who revealed themselves by means of priest-prophets, that is the “shamans”.

But then they embraced Islamism, but without being fanatical propellers. In relation to their Islamic religion, Arabic characters were used for writing, but here too an evolution began which led to the use of Latin characters.

Until 1936 Kazakhstan was part of the Russian Soviet Republic as an autonomous country and was later erected as a Federal Republic in the Soviet Union.

More than the other republics, it had a remarkable progress in industrialization thanks to its great natural resources, such as the coal in the Karaganda region, the Emba oil fields, the hydroelectric ones in the Irtys basin and the mining, gold-bearing ones.

During the Second World War its progress was even greater and its territory also increased because from 1938 to 1943 the number of its regions went from 11 to 16.

In addition to the extremely rich resources, which are basic for industry, Kazakhstan is abundantly developed in agriculture and even Alma Ata, the capital, can be considered an important agricultural center. Cattle breeding is also noteworthy, in particular a type of “merino” sheep, and then horses, camels and deer.

Until 1989 the country was part of the Soviet Union and did not undergo noteworthy events neither inside nor outside that Union. But with the advent of Gorbachev the whole nation took a different order. Each of the Federal Republics was able to detach themselves and start their own history on their own.

So in 1989, as the first resolution, in Kazakhstan, in addition to Russian as an inter-ethnic language, the official “Kazakh” language was restored.

Secondly, on 25 October 1990, territorial sovereignty was proclaimed and therefore all natural and economic resources passed under local national leadership.

To direct these operations since 1989 was N. Nazarbaev, secretary of the Kazakh Communist Party, who later called himself a socialist, and from February 1990 he became president of the Supreme Soviet.

Then on December 16, 1991 Kazakhstan proclaimed itself an Independent Republic and was one of the last to leave the Soviet Union.

And again in December 1991 Nazarbaev was elected President of the Republic. He proposed an economic agreement between the Central Asian republics, but also favored agreements with many other countries, making trips to the United States, Great Britain, France, Germany, Turkey and Korea.

This aimed to attract foreign investments to the country, favored by the creation of many free trade areas. Furthermore, since powerful nuclear weapons were present on Kazakh territory, Nazarbaev assured everyone that he would denuclearize the country. In fact, in May 1992 he joined the United States-Soviet Union pact for the progressive elimination of nuclear weapons.

Also in 1992 Kazakhstan became a member of the United Nations and the International Monetary Fund.

In January 1995 he entered into a customs union agreement with the Russian Federation and Belarus, which was strengthened the following year with the accession of Kyrgyzstan and with the extension to the economy and culture. In May 1995 he completed the dismantling of nuclear weapons from his territory. Also in the same year, a joint military force was created with Moscow.

Subsequently, these relations of friendship suffered a slight decline as, after various requests, not all satisfied, from a large Russian-speaking group present in the country, there was a massive exodus of this group towards the Russian Federation.


As far as politics was concerned, after the separation from the Soviet Union, in January 1993 Kazakhstan had a new Constitution which established the presidential republican system and in March 1994 there were the first legislative elections, contested for irregularities by various international observers.

Nazarbaev, having left the ex-communist socialist party, had founded the Popular Unity Party which, in the elections, assigned him the majority.

However, in March 1995 the Constitutional Court declared the 1994 elections null and then Nazarbaev dissolved Parliament and assumed the burden of governing until the outcome of the next elections, which were held in December of the same year with the same result.

Presidential elections were also held in January 1999 and Nazarbaev was able to count on a very large majority here too.


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