Kazakhstan Prime Minister Resigns

Reuters is now reporting that Kazakhstan's Prime Minister, Imangali Tasmagambetov, has resigned and that his resignation has been accepted by President of the Republic of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev. The acceptance of the resignation means that the entire cabinet must resign.

It is widely speculated that this is fallout from the recent debate between the administration and Parliament over a controversial land reform program put forth by the government. The Parliament heavily modified the original bill, but the first version was forced through when the administration won a recent confidence vote in Parliament.

Tasmagambetov becomes Kazakhstan's shortest-serving Prime Minister. He replaced the previous Prime Minister, who resigned in January of 2002.

UPDATE:In a later story, RFE reported that Tasmagambetov resigned to protest the falsification of the confidence vote by unnamed deputies in the lower chamber of Parliament.