For years, Russian was the language of communication in the post-Soviet space in Central Asia and the Caucasus. Is this era coming to an end?
President of Kazakhstan Kasym-Žomart Tokayev and Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin.
Last week, the presidents of Kazakhstan Kasym-Žomart Tokayev and Ilham Aliyev of Azerbaijan met. And several observers noticed an interesting thing. In the published recording of the meeting, the leaders do not communicate in Russian, although it is largely the lingua franca of the post-Soviet space.
“Interesting dialogue between the presidents of Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. They do not speak Russian, but use their own languages. Both are Turkic, but belong to different language subgroups. Azerbaijani to Oghuz and Kazakh to Kypchak. That’s why their pronunciation is very different,” he wrote on the social network Twitter Russian analyst Kamil Galeyev.
Experts warn against hasty conclusions, but at the same time it seems that the brutal war that Russia launched against Ukraine on February 24 could lead to a further strengthening of the identity of the nations of the post-Soviet space in Central Asia and the Caucasus. Although the states in these regions maintain good relations with Moscow, they have reservations about the conflict that the Kremlin has started.Read more The Kazakh president has cooled down on Putin. It does not recognize the ‘republics’ occupied by the Russians
It is probably most visible in Kazakhstan. President Tokayev unequivocally refused to recognize the Russian-occupied “republics” in the Ukrainian Donbass. In addition, Kazakhstan largely respects the sanctions imposed on Moscow by the West because of the war.
“We are intensifying cooperation with the Russian government, but sanctions are sanctions. We cannot violate them. Especially because we were warned by the West about so-called secondary sanctions,” Tokayev told Rosiya-24 television in June.
Moscow would probably like to receive more support from Kazakhstan. It seems that they are trying to put pressure on Tokayev, even though in recent months there has been a problem with the transportation of Kazakh oil to the Russian Black Sea port of Novorossiysk. However, Kazakhstan will export part of its oil through Azerbaijan.
Tokayev has to resist Russian pressure also because he must not look weak at home. There are enough politicians in Moscow who openly say that at least part of Kazakhstan should belong to Russia. And Tokaev was certainly not pleased with the fact that in the recent period at least twice, when he met with Vladimir Putin, the Russian president did not know or wanted to pronounce his name correctly.
Source: Pravda – Správy by spravy.pravda.sk.
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