MOSCOW (AP) — An international election observation group says there were irregularities in Kazakhstan's parliamentary elections, which affirmed the ruling party's grip on power.
According to a Central Elections Commission statement Monday, preliminary results show President Nursultan Nazarbayev's Nur Otan party winning 82 percent of the vote.
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's special coordinator for election observation in Kazakhstan, Geir Joergen Bekkevold, told reporters on Monday that international observers, who were allowed unfettered access, observed ballot-box stuffing and other irregularities.
The vote comes amid a collapse in Kazakhstan's economic fortunes caused by the falling price for oil, its main export commodity. Inflation is around 15 percent and the currency has lost 30 percent of its value.