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Islam is massively inculcated in Kazakhstan: Yertysbayev

17 august 2012, 15:10
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Kazakhstan President's advisor Yermukhamet Yertysbayev. ©tengrinews.kz
Kazakhstan President's advisor Yermukhamet Yertysbayev. ©tengrinews.kz
Kazakhstan society is not undergoing an Islamic renaissance, Kazakhstan President’s Advisor Yermukhamet Yertysbayev told in an interview to Central Asia Monitor.

“Islam has never had such an influence in Kazakhstan the way it has in Iran or Saudi Arabia. That’s why it is wrong to speak of an Islamic renaissance. Most likely, we should call it a massive inculcation of Islam in Kazakhstan during the independence years,” he said noting that Kazakhstan has been a secular country where religion is separated from the state.

Yertysbayev explained that he saw no contradictions in having a secular state and enjoying presence of different religions in it. “The freedom of faith does not only give people a right to exercise any religion but also a right to exercise none of them at all. Don’t forget that a believer is also the country’s citizen and, apart from freedoms, he also has obligations,” the President’s Advisor stated.

Yertysbayev also told in the interview that Kazakhstan did not have any strong opposition that could negotiate with the authorities. “Should there be such forces, believe me, the state would have start negotiating with them. Our social and economic issues are stocking up, but the state resolves them without considering the opposition’s views,” he said. “The talks are normally held with the strong ones. Weak opponents are of no interest as negotiators.”

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