THE ELECTION: President Nursultan Nazarbayev is seeking a fresh seven-year term amid concerns that if the election is judged unfair, the opposition will mount the kind of protests that have brought down governments in other ex-Soviet countries, Ukraine, Georgia and Kyrgyzstan.
KAZAKHSTAN'S IMPORTANCE: The Central Asian country is rich in oil and natural gas, is strategically positioned between Russia and China, and has a troop contingent in Iraq. The United States has pressed for democratic reform, albeit in a low-key way.
THE LIKELY OUTCOME: Polls predict a big win for the incumbent, but much depends on whether European monitors judge the voting to have been free and fair, reported AP. P.T.
The Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation put the head of the contractor company of Russia's space corporation Roskosmos, Sergei Slastikhin, on international wanted list
"Washington operators of the sanctions machine ought to get acquainted with the history of Russia, to stop the unnecessary fussing," spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry said