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​​Independence Day: "There are more questions than answers"

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By Saule Tasboulatova

December 16 – the Independence Day of Kazakhstan. With what feelings do our compatriots welcome the day? On the eve of this holiday "Ak Zhaik" conducted a small survey.

Image 0Yury Serebryansky, writer:

– For me the Independence Day is not a nominal holiday. Kazakhstan and Russia are now again seeking close cooperation, but it is important to keep what you've achieved during 25 years, to defend those achievements, and it is very important to remember that independence is also, for example, a child's plastic shovel with the label "Made in Kazakhstan". I hope.

Image 1Talgat Mamraimov, political scientist:

– I meet this day without any false patriotic enthusiasm as we haven't become yet a full-fledged independent and strong state implementing its own course without external influence. Besides, during all years of independence our authorities couldn't create an opportunity for appearance of a qualitative science, educational system, economy, cultural and information spheres. Besides this day is 'stained' by blood of Zhanaozen oil workers that devaluates many actions of the current power.

Zira Nauryzbayeva, culturologist:

Image 4

– For me it is the day of tragic events of our contemporary history, the day of remembrance, the day when we must pray and ask for forgiveness. And the day when we need to remember those who shed their blood for our independence.

Denis Krivosheev, journalist:

Image 5

– The longer I celebrate this holiday, the feeling of alarm is becoming deeper inside me. It is obvious that Kazakhstan is losing its independence much quicker than it was expected. The agenda is becoming wider, the questions are increasing, but there aren't any answers. Failures in economic policy are obvious. We haven't been forcing for a long time, we are still at the tail of evolution. Kazakhstan citizens has this unique gift – its independence, but it is first of all - the responsibility. Especially for the first three generations. Independence coincided with high prices of mineral resources that we have in abundance, but it is already obvious that we haven't' taken the advantage of it. Yes, we preened our feathers. We updated, mended, constructed, bought something, but the institute of state hasn't' been created. Education is on zero level and it is continuously reformed. Economy is based on raw materials. Patriotism? Yes, we have it. But the question is – what kind of patriotism? In Russia they say that "kvass drink patriotism eventually comes to an end, when kvass has been drunk".

I am pleased with current falling of oil prices: it is the chance for our country to rethink the situation in the world, to find the real points of growth, to develop responsible business by creating conditions for it. Time to return to original public contracts, to democratic values – and start from the scratch!

Gulzhan Ergaliyeva, journalist:

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– Firstly, December 16 for majority of Kazakhstan citizens is associated with two mournful events – we witnessed the events of December 16, 1986. I was on that day on the square and I saw that was going on; and then the massacre of oil workers in Zhanaozen – the day that we never forget. We, as an opposition, tried to help people who got into trouble, – during those tragic events and after the events we helped them in court trials. Those are real events that passed through our hearts. This date is considered the Independence Day, but it goes to the background compared to tragic events, I think, And for a long time in our history that will be the case – or at least until the day when the responsible people for this tragedy will not be established. Therefore on December 16 and 17, I with my colleagues come to the square of Independence to lay flowers at the monument to Independence and we give lunch in Almaty and Mangistau in memory of those who died in Zhanaozen.

As for then official holiday – there is no deep satisfaction and boundless joy. I think that our country hasn't risen to its full height. We didn't receive political reforms, economic situation of the country is deplorable, active citizens are deprived of political freedom. We never had fair elections. But there is a hope that one day the Independence Day will become a real holiday and will represent a prospering state. For this purpose we must do a lot of things.

December 18 2015, 11:25

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