On March 19, early elections of deputies to the Mazhilis (lower house of parliament) and maslikhats (local representative bodies) are held in Kazakhstan.
Who takes part
Seven political forces are participating in the elections, including the country's largest party, Amanat. The following parties registered for taking part in the elections: People's Party of Kazakhstan; "Aq Jol"; Kazakhstan Green Party "Baytak"; National Social Democratic Party; "Auyl" People's Democratic Patriotic Party; «Respublica» Party. In order to be elected to parliament, each of them must receive at least 5% of the votes. In the event that only one party manages to do this, then the party that takes the second place in terms of the number of votes will be elected to the parliament.
Polling stations in most regions of the country opened at 07:00 Astana time (04:00 Moscow time), and an hour later voting began in the republic's west. In total, more than 10 thousand polling stations have opened in Kazakhstan, and another 77 have been opened in 62 countries, including Russia. At the moment, about 12 million people have the right to vote in the republic. Its population is almost 20 million people. Voting will end at 20:00 (17:00 Moscow time).
According to the Central Election Commission, by 14:00 (11:00 Moscow time), the turnout is 46.84%. At the moment, 5,635,462 votes have been cast. Residents of the Kostanay region vote most actively. The turnout there is already over 62%. The lowest turnout is in Almaty - 15.38%. More than 33% of people voted in Astana.
The head of the government, Alikhan Smailov, has already cast his vote in the elections. He did it at one of the polling stations in Astana. The country's first president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, also took part in the voting. The ex-head of state appeared in public after a heart operation for the first time. He congratulated the people of the country on the holiday of Nauryz, but did not want to communicate with journalists anymore.
Violations and reaction of observers
By 15:00 (12:00 Moscow time) 25 possible law violations cases were recorded, the Department of the Service for the Protection of Public Interests of the Prosecutor General's Office of Kazakhstan reported. The prosecutor's office received 20 appeals, and the Prosecutor General's Office received itself - 25.
At the same time, foreign observers draw attention to the high level of organization of the elections and emphasize that they meet all the norms of a democratic electoral process. In particular, no violations were recorded by observers from the Interparliamentary Assembly (IPA) of the CIS member countries.