About the situation with the Russian Diaspora in the Republics of Kazakhstan


According to the Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan on statistics as of the end of 2008 there are about 3,9 million Russians (25,5 % of the total population) in the country.

Overwhelming part of the Russians professes Orthodox, which is the second significant religion in Kazakhstan (after Islam) and presented by Russian Orthodox Church. This said, the orthodox Christmas is declared as the state holiday and is celebrated all over the country.

As for the age parametres of the Russian ethnic group, the category aged younger than 29 years makes less than 40 %, whereas senior people (over 60 years old) make 19 % of the total population. 78 % of the Russians live in cities.

Around 15 % of the Russians work in manufacturing industry, 13% - in agriculture, 12% - in trade, 11% - in the field of transport and communication, 7% - in public healthcare and 6% - in education.

The wide network of "Russian organizations» exists in Kazakhstan (about 100 organizations and cultural centres); these are Russian, Slavic and Cossack associations, which operate both on the country and on regional levels.

According to the article 7 of the Constitution of the Republic of Kazakhstan the status of the Russian language is defined as follows: «In the state organizations and local governments together with Kazakh language (state language) Russian language is officially used».

From the legal point of view, the constitutional definition of the status of Russian (as officially used language) does not mean that it is given a status of the official language (language, which, by the decisions of public authorities, is recognized as obligatory means of intrastate and interstate intercourse in public spheres).

Priorities and main tendencies of the authorities of Kazakhstan in the language sphere are reflected in «the Concept of a language policy of the Republic Kazakhstan» of 1996, according to which in the long term Russian is given a role of «the one of the basic sources of information on different areas of a science and technology and means of communication with near and far abroad».

According to the official statistics, 84,6 % of the population speak Russian, including in cities 92,5 %, and 74,9 % in rural places.

In the system of secondary education more than in 40 % of schools teaching is conducted in Russian. Today Kazakhstan hosts 6 branches of the Russian higher education institutions, the most popular of which is the Moscow State University named after M.V.Lomonosov.

There are 14 Russian theatres in Kazakhstan with the repertoires that contain Russian classics and creations of the modern Russian authors.

With 2940 sources of mass media in Kazakhstan in total, 955 of them broadcast only in Russian (34 %), 1068 - in the Kazakh and Russian languages (35 %), and 362 - on the Kazakh, Russian and other languages (13 %).

Russian ethnic group is widely represented in the organ of the state power. In the highest legislative body it is presented by 21members of Parliament, including 4 senators in the upper Chamber and 17 MPs in the lower Chamber (Mazhilis). There are over 10000 ethnic Russians in the public service system, including 200 on the political level.

58 representatives of the Russian Diaspora serve in the Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan, created at the initiative of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev as one of the main instruments of the implementation of the state policy in the interethnic sphere.