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Ruling party seals expected victory in Kazakhstan vote

A Kazakh policeman votes during parliamentary elections in the Kazakh city of Baikonur on March 20, 2016The ruling party of energy-rich Kazakhstan’s ageing autocrat President Nursultan Nazarbayev secured a landslide victory in parliamentary elections, results showed Monday, a poll OSCE observers said failed to meet international democratic standards. According to the Central Electoral Commission (CEC) Nazarbayev’s Nur Otan party won 82 percent of votes in Sunday’s election and will share parliament with the pro-government People’s Communist Party and Ak Zhol, who each secured just over seven percent of the vote. The vote — which saw little real opposition to Nazarbayev — came as the ex-Soviet country sees its once-booming economy slump on the back of falling oil prices and an economic crisis in northern neighbour Russia, but the strongman’s grip on power appears as firm as ever.

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