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Kazakh woman to run for Polish presidency 03 марта 2015, 17:41

A Kazakh native turned Polish human rights advocate shares her presidential ambitions.
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Balli Marzec. Photo taken from personal Twitter account Balli Marzec. Photo taken from personal Twitter account

The next president of Poland might be a Kazakh woman. The head of Kazakh community in Poland and Kazakhstani oppositioner abroad Balli Marzec is determined to participate in the next presidential elections in Poland, NewsBalt writes citing naTemat.

It is not yet clear whether the current President of Poland Bronislaw Komorowski will run for the second term. His presential term expires in August 2015. And while Kazakhstan is waiting for its own presidential election in April, it turns out there may soon be another ethnic-Kazakh president -- Balli Marzec -- elsewhere in the world.

Born as Balzhan Nauryzbayeva in South Kazakhstan Oblast, she has five sisters and two brothers. While studying in Moscow, she married a man from Poland, where she moved to and has been living in for 20 years now. She has two sons, Diapazon writes.

According to naTemat, the Kazakh’s chances to collect 100,000 signatures to be nominated are failry small, but despite this, she believes that her participation in the presidential race is a logical continuation of her activities.

"I believe  I fit the role of the President of Poland no less than the other candidates. For many years I have been dealing with human rights and democratic change in post-Soviet states, social activities, assistance to those whose rights were violated. I think that my experience could be useful in Poland,” Marzec says. “My second priority is the problem of countries that used to be part of the Soviet Union. I can handle the foreign policy issues very well, as I am closely familiar with the problems of Eastern Europe and Central Asia."

She also says that she can make a contribution into the resolution of the conflict in Ukraine, citing her knowledge of the language and mentality that is common in post-Soviet states.

“As president of Poland, I would try to ensure that Poland is a true mediator between the West and the former states of the Soviet Union. After all, the Poles have more in common with their eastern neighbors than with the Dutch or French. We were in the same socialist camp, went through the same problems. Therefore Poland should participate in the negotiations about Ukraine. It must be a mediator. It is not so at this moment. We're outside the negotiation process, although we understand the Ukrainians better than the Germans and the French do," she says, adding that she will also call for a dialogue with Russia in the context of settlement of the conflict in Ukraine.

The Kazakh woman admits she has little political experience but does not consider this as disadvantage. She explains that she has had enough experience as human rights advocate. “I am a citizen fighting for human rights and civil freedoms. These are the building blocks of democracy,” she said.

Describing the philosophy of her presidency she said: “Stick together with the people, live the life of an everyman.”

If Balli makes it into the race, she will be the first Muslim nominee to run for Polish presidency. She is sure this does not reduce her chances as she has not experienced any discrimination based on her religion. Her husband is Catholic and her views on religion are quite relaxed.

She believes that her being president would have given Poland an image of a tolerant country, but promises not to emphasize religious issues is she is elected.

By Dinara Urazova


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