President Tokayev is not against return of former name of Kazakh capital

President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has no objection to return the name of the country’s capital back to Astana. The capital of Kazakhstan was called so until 2019.

The initiative to return the capital of the country to its former name belongs to the deputies of the Parliament of Kazakhstan.

“An appropriate amendment has been made to the draft constitutional law, which will be considered by the parliament,” said Ruslan Zheldibay, press secretary of the president of Kazakhstan.

“The proposal of the parliamentarians is included in the draft constitutional law with the consent of the head of state,” Tokayev’s press secretary added.

However, Tokayev considers the decisive role of Nursultan Nazarbayev in strengthening the statehood of Kazakhstan and the formation of the capital as a historical fact, and therefore other objects named after the country’s first president should retain their names, Zheldibay pointed out the presidential opinion.

Until the end of 1997, the capital of Kazakhstan was the city of Alma-Ata, located in the south of the country. In December 1997, President Nursultan Nazarbayev decided to move the capital to Central Kazakhstan, choosing for this the city, which was called Akmola at that time. In May 1998, he signed a decree renaming the city to Astana.

The proposal to rename Astana to the city of Nursultan was proposed by Tokayev himself after he was elected president of Kazakhstan.

On March 19, 2019, Nursultan Nazarbayev, who has led Kazakhstan since 1990, announced the resignation of the President of the Republic and appointed Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, who was then the country’s prime minister, as acting head of state.

Sept. 13, 2022