Kazakhstan - Country history and economic development

650-750. A tribal alliance of herders and nomads known as the Kaganate moves into the area that is now Kazakhstan.

750. Arabs invade the area, spreading the influence of the Islamic culture and religion.

1700. The people divide into 3 Kazakh tribes (called "Juz"), which become known as the senior, middle, and junior tribes.

1731. The junior tribe joins the Russian empire, while the senior and middle tribes remain independent.

1820. The khan of Kokand, ruling from the ancient city of Kokand located far to the south, extends its political influence northward, capturing and taking control of areas of southern Kazakhstan.

1850. Major Russian emigration occurs. Russians arrive in Kazakhstan in search of new agricultural lands.

1867. The Russian tsar decrees the establishment of the Turkestan general-governorship, extending official Russian rule into Kazakhstan and Central Asia, making Kazakhstan part of the Russian Empire.

1917. The Bolshevik Revolution in Russia toward the end of World War I leads to the establishment of a communist government and the creation, in 1918, of the Russian Socialist Republic (which includes the territory of present-day Kazakhstan).

1925. Ethnic Kazakhs in the southern region gain recognition as the separate Karakalpak Autonomous Province. The province is included in the new republic of Uzbekistan, not in Kazakhstan, thereby dividing the ethnic Kazakhs.

1929. The capital of Kazakhstan is moved from the city of Kzyl Orda to Alma-Ata (later known as Almaty).

1929-33. The Russian government embarks upon the collectivization of agriculture to reorganize agriculture along the lines of industrial management. The disastrous agricultural policies lead to widespread opposition, farmers' uprisings, and famine.

1936. The province of the territories of modern day Kazakhstan is proclaimed to be a Soviet Socialist Republic, called the Kazakh Soviet Socialist Republic. During the rule of Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, the communist government conducts campaigns against political opposition. Thousands of Kazakhs are imprisoned for crimes against the state, the political crime of disagreement with state policy.

1957-61. Under the leadership of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev a new agricultural initiative called the Virgin Lands Campaign relocates tens of thousands of people from the European parts of the USSR to Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan is identified as the new bread basket of the USSR.

1986. After a decision by Soviet leaders to appoint an ethnic Russian as the head of the Kazakhstan Communist Party, widespread nationalist opposition to the dominance of the Communist Party results in public protests and riots.

1990. Demands for greater political autonomy on the part of the Socialist Republics of the USSR lead to a movement for republican sovereignty. The Kazakhstan Soviet-era parliament passes the Declaration of Sovereignty, asserting that the natural resources of the country belong to Kazakhstan and not the Soviet Union.

1991. An unsuccessful attempt to take over the Russian government by Communist Party hard-liners precipitates a crisis in Moscow. Many rank and file communists join opponents of Moscow's long-standing domination of the rest of the country. Kazakhstan, like all of the 15 republics that made up the USSR, declares national independence.

1991. In December, 11 high Communist Party officials gather in Almaty (then known as "Alma-Ata") to sign a document announcing the end of the USSR and the establishment of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).

1992. Kazakhstan joins major international organizations such as the United Nations, the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

1993. The Kazakhstan Constitution is adopted.

1995. A new version of the Kazakhstan Constitution, assigning greater powers to the executive branch, is adopted.

1995. The first Kazakhstan tax code is introduced.

2000. Kazakhstan joins the Eurasian Economic Community, an international organization designed to create a common economic market throughout much of the former USSR.

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