Amu Region

Kazakh government resigns, President Tokayev names new acting PM

The government of Kazakhstan, led by Prime Minister Alikhan Smailov, resigned on Feb. 5. Following the resignation, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev appointed Deputy Prime Minister Roman Sklyar as acting prime minister.

The reasons behind the government’s resignation were not immediately disclosed.

Despite Kazakhstan’s historically strong ties with Moscow, President Tokayev has maintained a cautious stance regarding the conflict in Ukraine. He has notably refrained from recognizing the legality of Russia’s annexation of Ukrainian territories in 2022.

While maintaining a delicate balance, Tokayev has not severed ties with Russian President Vladimir Putin. Putin paid a visit to Kazakhstan in November 2023, during which he lauded the strategic partnership between the two nations.

President Tokayev has affirmed Kazakhstan’s commitment to adhering to the sanctions imposed on Russia. Kazakh officials have reported that the export of military goods to Russia stopped shortly after the onset of the conflict in Ukraine.

However, Kazakhstan has faced criticism for allegedly allowing Russia to bypass international sanctions related to its actions in Ukraine.