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You're reading: Observers see flaws as Kazakhstan ends one-party rule (updated)
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Kazakhstan’s parliament will contain three parties, all of them sympathetic to the president, for the first time after Sunday’s vote to create a veneer of democracy in the face of growing frustration over the unequal distribution of oil riches in the former Soviet republic ruled by Nazarbayev since 1989.

But parties which oppose Nazarb a yev were barred from the vote, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe said in a scathing report on the election.

"This election took place in a tightly controlled environment, with serious restrictions on citizens’ electoral rights," said Miklos Haraszti, head of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights’ observation mission.

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