The focus of country's leadership is on the issue of further improving state policy in the interethnic relations.
For solving this problem, a Working Group was created by direction of President K. Tokayev to prepare a Concept of state policy in the interethnic relations.
Wide range of experts are included in this group, there are scientists, public figures, cultural scientists, representatives of the Assembly of People of Kazakhstan (APK) and government officials. In total, the Working Group consists of 25 people, six of them are members of the National Council on Public Trust under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan - Rasul Zhumaly, an Expert of the N. Nazarbayev Centre on the development of inter-confessional and inter-civilisational dialogue; Gulmira Ileuova, Director of the Public Foundation “Centre for Social and Political Research “Strategy ”; Kanat Nurov, Chairman of the Board of the Aspandau Research Foundation; Aydos Sarym - public figure, political scientist; Andrey Chebotarev, Director of the Centre for Actual Research "Alternative"; Marat Shibutov, public figure, political scientist. The coordination of the Group’s work is ensured by the Kazakhstan Institute for Strategic Studies under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
Such a composition of the Working Group provides a balanced representation of both the scientific theoretical bloc and the political practitioners.
The activities of the Working Group take place online due-to the coronavirus lockdown. The experts formulated a vision, the main points and approaches that should be reflected in the Concept, and currently they are being generalised in a single document.
With all the diversity of opinions, all members of the Working Group note the particular importance and responsibility of the work carried out. At the same time, the task is to respond accurately, fully and objectively to the public request formed in society for improving work in the interethnic relations.
Thus, according to the expert of the Institute for World Economy and Politics under the Fund of the First President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Elbasy Ayman Zhusupova, “The majority of the country's citizens supported the policy in the interethnic relations implemented in the country in previous years. Nevertheless, today, a need to increase policy’s effectiveness, including representatives of civil society in its discussion, ensuring public dialogue in the interethnic relations, are becoming more and more obvious taking into account the new realities. ”
Mukhtarbek Shaykemelev, Head of the Department of Political Science at the Institute for Philosophy, Political Science and Religious Studies of the National Academy of Science of the Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Kazakhstan, believes: “The main goal of improving state ethnopolitics in the interethnic relations is the effective implementation of existing constitutional and legal principles regulating interethnic relations, the successful implementation of state programmes supporting civic initiatives, and achieving a fruitful dialogue between public authorities and ethnocultural associations.”
Olzhas Shariyazdanov, the chief expert of the “Kogamdyk Kelisim” RSI, believes that “Now it is very important to hear the opinion of each expert, to receive constructive criticism of the ongoing processes, to discuss existing proposals and to develop an optimal model of state regulation of interethnic relations, corresponding to modern realities. The current situation shows us that there is a great need to highlight the actual contours of the interaction of ethnic groups of the country, determine the purpose of the subjects of interethnic relations, use the new paradigm of scientific and analytical work and sociological research, develop recommendations for improving systems for preventing ethnic conflicts at the central and local levels”.
Professor, Doctor of Historical Sciences Georgy Kan says that “Special emphasis should be placed on modernizing the institutions of the Assembly of the People of Kazakhstan, building a new quality of feedback for politicians and citizens.” and he proposes to include this point in the Concept.
Aigul Sadvokasova, Head of the Centre for the Study of Interethnic and Interfaith Relations in Central-Asian Region of the Academy of Public Administration under the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, draws attention of the Working Group members to the fact that “The result of the joint work of experts will allow us to develop new approaches in such a delicate area as interethnic relations. It should be understood that interethnic relations become most sensitive in the face of a decline in socio-economic dynamics. Since it is expected that the post-quarantine period will bring significant changes in social habits, behavior, communication of the population, it is necessary to more carefully approach the development of new approaches in this area as well.”
Currently 2 videoconferences have taken place where the Working Group members constructively discussed the theses and approaches put forward by each other. During the discussions, experts try to combine and take into account the most diverse positions and opinions, and reach a consensus.
Active work on a draft of Concept of state policy in the interethnic relations continues.