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Monday, August 9, 1999 Published at 18:46 GMT 19:46 UK


World: Asia-Pacific

Kazakh sackings over plane scandal


President Nazarbayev of Kazakhstan has sacked his defence minister, security chief and other senior officials over a botched attempt to export fighter aircraft.

The scandal emerged in March when customs officers in Azerbaijan found the disassembled parts of six MiG jets on a Russian transport plane which had flown in from Kazakhstan.

It transpired that the planes were being shipped to Bosnia-Hercegovina in violation of a United Nations arms embargo.

President Nazarbayev said the defence minister, Mukhtar Altynbayev, and chief of state security, Nurtai Abykayev, had ignored his order to investigate the incident and were being dismissed for a blatant violation of the rules on selling military equipment.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service



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