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ASTANA, July 5. /TASS/. Kazakhstan and Russia are tired by the most close and trust-based relations, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev said in an interview with TASS First Deputy Director General Mikhail Gusman.
"When the state [of Kazakhstan] was built, it happened to be multi-national," Nazarbayev said. "At some point, we were a minority in our native land. People began to go away after the collapse of the Soviet Union… although I used to say ‘You are all needed here. You will not be treated like you are here anywhere else. You are Russians but you are Kazakh Russian.’ And it turned that way."
"We have been keeping these relations over all these years," the Kazakh leader stressed. "Since 1991, when the Soviet Union ceased to exist, these relations have been spoiled by nothing. It’s only natural that two neighboring states may have problems in everyday life… But we have been solving them thanks to trust and mutual understanding."
Investments Kazakhstan has received after it waived its nuclear status helped it to revive its economy, President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev said in an interview with TASS First Deputy Director General Mikhail Gusman.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, there were heated debates about what was to be done with Kazakhstan’s nuclear arsenals, the fourth in the world after the United States, Russia and Great Britain at that time, Nazarbayev said. "They were really heated debates. European and U.S. leaders came here several times to hold talks," he said. "Naturally, we, a young, unfledged state that had not yet risen from its knees, did not like the idea of becoming an outcast because of these nuclear missiles. Moreover, I was fully aware that another country had targeted its own missile against each one of ours. The same is happening today."
At that time, he said, the country was faced with a number of important tasks. First, to receive guarantees of independence from nuclear states that they would never stage aggression against Kazakhstan. Second, to get money to dismantle the missiles and for missiles themselves. "As you know, all these problems were finally solved," Nazarbayev said. "We received money for nuclear missile fuels and dismantling these missiles. Moreover, we received money to reequip missile plants to convert them to civilian production."
"I think this was hen Kazakhstan won trust," the Kazakh leader stressed. "Over these years, we have attracted more than 200 billion U.S. dollars in direct investments. They were not loans. And this money helped to revive Kazakhstan’s economy. I think it was the right decision. That is why Kazakhstan has been reputed as a non-proliferation leader, a leader in the fight for nuclear-free world."