Diplomatic Briefing

Your exclusive news aggregator handpicked daily!

Archive for Kazakhstan

Newsline: Kazakh Embassy Employee Found Dead In Cairo

Kazakh authorities have confirmed the death of an employee of the country’s embassy in Egypt. Foreign Ministry spokesman Aibek Smadiyarov told reporters in Nur-Sultan on December 17 that the death of Elaman Zholdasov in Cairo is being investigated by Egyptian officials. Detailed information about the case will be made public on December 18, Smadiyarov said. Earlier media reports said Zholdasov’s body was found near his apartment block in the Egyptian capital on November 13. His cousin, Gulnara Pernebekova, was quoted as saying the body bore “multiple injuries,” the hands were “tied behind his back,” and a rope was “around his neck.” (https://www.rferl.org/a/kazakh-embassy-employee-found-dead-in-cairo/30330388.html) Pernebekova claimed that Zholdasov’s family had been informed that the Egyptian investigators were considering “suicide” as a possible cause for the death.

Newsline: Kazakh President Appoints His Brother-In-Law As Ambassador To Bulgaria

Kazakh President Qasym-Zhomart Toqaev has appointed his brother-in-law Temirtai Izbastin as Kazakhstan’s ambassador to Bulgaria. Kazakhstan’s presidential press service announced the appointment on November 1. The 61-year-old Izbastin is the husband of Toqaev’s sister Qarlygha Izbastina. He has been working at Kazakhstan’s diplomatic missions in other countries since 1994. Media reports say Toqaev’s son, Timur Toqaev, and Izbastin’s son, Mukhamed, are the founders of the Abi Petroleum Capital oil company — a firm that operates in Kazakhstan’s western region of Atyrau. (https://www.rferl.org/a/kazakh-president-appoints-brother-in-law-ambassador-bulgaria/30248382.html) Toqaev, 66, became Kazakhstan’s president after the country’s long-time leader, President Nursultan Nazarbaev, announced his surprise resignation in March.

Newsline: Kazakhstan cancels plan for Dublin embassy over ‘protocol’ issue

Kazakhstan, the largest and richest country in central Asia, has cancelled plans to open an embassy in Ireland due to an issue over protocol with the Irish Government. Rustam Tazhenov, who has been based in Dublin and who was to be appointed charge d’affaires, said the Kazakh embassy was not opening due “to a matter of protocol” between the two countries. A premises for the embassy had been lined up close to Fitzwilliam Square in Dublin 2. he Department of Foreign Affairs declined to comment on the matter, but sources familiar with the department’s handling of the application from the Kazakhs said the country applied to open a consulate rather than an embassy. Government protocol allows countries to open only embassies in Ireland. Mr Tazhenov, who will leave Ireland shortly, declined to elaborate on the exact circumstances, but dismissed any suggestion his government sought to open a consulate.


Newsline: Kazakhstan is opening embassy in Ireland

The largest and richest country in Central Asia, Kazakhstan is opening an embassy in Ireland to expand trade between the two countries, learn how to attract multinationals and build an International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) like that in Dublin. Rustam Tazhenov, who will represent Kazakhstan in Ireland as charge d’affairs, says the embassy will open early in the new year, and is likely to be located “somewhere close to Fitzwilliam Square” in Dublin 2. “The main reason we are opening the embassy in Dublin is to expand economic relationships between Ireland and Kazakhstan in various sectors,” says Mr Tazhenov. “In compliance with Irish protocol, some official paperwork has to be done before we could officially announce the opening of the Kazakh embassy in Dublin. Nevertheless, the ceremony of presenting credentials to the President of Ireland by the Kazakh ambassador is scheduled for the beginning of next year.”


Newsline: JPMorgan Promises to Process Russian Embassy Payment in Bid to Ease Tension

JPMorgan said it was processing a payment from Russia’s Embassy in Kazakhstan to Russian insurance agency Sogaz, moving to ease tensions after Moscow accused the U.S. bank of “illegally” blocking the transaction. Russia’s Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday the bank had blocked the payment “under the pretext of anti-Russian sanctions” and suggested the “unacceptable, illegal and absurd” act would have consequences for the U.S. Embassy in Russia. The confrontation threatened to further strain ties between Washington and Moscow, which have been locked in a standoff over Russia’s annexation of Crimea. “Following consultation with our regulators, we are processing this transaction,” JPMorgan said on Thursday in a statement. Last month, Washington imposed sanctions, including visa bans and asset freezes, against several Russians close to President Vladimir Putin and against Rossiya Bank, which it said was the “personal bank” for the leader’s inner circle. Insurance agency Sogaz is 48.5 percent owned by Abros, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bank Rossiya. Guidelines on the U.S. Treasury department’s website from the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control says that property which is more than 50 percent owned by a person on the sanctions blacklist is affected. “U.S. persons are advised to act with caution when considering a transaction with a non-blocked entity” in which the blocked person has significant ownership interest that is less than 50 percent, the guidelines say.


Newsline: Russia Says US Bank Illegally Blocking Embassy Money Transfer

Russia has accused U.S. banking giant J. P. Morgan of illegally blocking a cash transfer from its embassy in Kazakhstan to a Russian company. A ministry statement calls J.P. Morgan’s move “unacceptable, illegal and absurd” and warns the blockage will “have consequences” for the U.S. embassy in Russia. The Russian Foreign Ministry linked the blockage to U.S. sanctions slapped on Moscow for its seizure of Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula. There was no immediate comment from U.S. officials or J. P. Morgan. The U.S. Congress Tuesday approved the sanctions announced by President Barack Obama last month and also gave final approval to $1 billion in loan guarantees to the Ukrainian government.


Newsline: Kazakhstan’s embassy refuse visas for opposing nation side’s star players

There appeared to be something extremely fishy about the Europa League qualification tie between Norwegian club IL Hodd and Kazakhstan’s FC Aktobe. Hodd, taking a 1-0 first-leg advantage into the return fixture, arrived in Kazakhstan without two of their best players after their visa applications were rejected. The absence of Akeem Latifu and Sivert Heltne Nilsen from Thursday’s second-leg was as telling as it was convenient: Aktobe turned the tie around with a 2-0 home win to advance 2-1 on aggregate. Making the whole thing even barmier are reports which suggest the visa refusals – which came with no explanation whatsoever from the Kazakh embassy – are perhaps retaliation for a similar instance in the first leg, when two key Aktobe players were denied access to Norway.