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Central Asia news

Nazarbayev's former son-in-law fears deportation to Kazakhstan

30.07.2007 10:45 msk

Vremya Novostei

Politics Kazakhstan

Rahat Aliyev, Kazakh president's former son-in-law and central figure of the worst political scandal in Kazakhstan in years, appealed to the ambassadors accredited to the OSCE headquarters. With criminal charges awaiting Aliyev in Kazakhstan, he himself is in the capital of Vienna where he was already arrested on Astana's request but released on bail (1 million euros). The Austrian authorities ponder deportation of the recently nearly omnipotent Kazakh official.

Aliyev is an ex- in all his capacities - ex-ambassador, ex-senior deputy foreign minister, and ex-oligarch. One of the former chiefs of Kazakh national security, he maintains to have always been fighting "for the democratic, pro-European choice" of his country. Aliyev reminded foreign diplomats that it was to ensure this choice that he had suggested the "ambitious idea" of Kazakhstan's OSCE chairmanship. He implied that his warnings against "presidency for life" for Nazarbayev cost him his ambassadorship and that Kazakhstan was "rapidly turning into a monarchic police state." Aliyev's appeal is dictated by his fears of extradition to Kazakhstan. "The Kazakh regime is trying to lay its hands on me at any cost."

Die Deutsche Welle observer Vitaly Volkov refers to his sources in Kazakh secret services as saying that a campaign for Aliyev's extradition is under way indeed. Specialists from Austrian secret services were allegedly invited to Kazakhstan to be shown evidence of the former president's relative's criminal activity. Insiders even claim that "materials of the investigation include Dariga Nazarbayeva's testimony against her ex-spouse."

Foreign center of Kazakh political opposition meanwhile objects to Aliyev's deportation to Kazakhstan where "unbiased investigation cannot be guaranteed." Interviewed by the Kazakh newspaper Tasjargan, center leader Serik Medetbekov made a reference to the men in Kazakhstan who had suffered at Aliyev's hands when he "bludgeoned them, had evidence falsified, and ordered torture." "Aliyev should be tried for these crimes in Europe, the way Yugoslavian and African generals were tried," Medetbekov said.

The text of Aliyev's appeal to foreign ambassadors posted on the web site of Kazakhstan Today (news agency that belonged to the empire of Aliyev and Nazarbayeva before the scandal) disappeared from it last night.

Arkady Dubnov,

Vremya Novostei, July 30, 2007, p. 5. © Translated by Ferghana.Ru