Karim Masimov’s New Victory

In the beginning of November, Nursultan Nazarbayev signed Decree 579 “On Some Questions of the Protection of the State Secrets of Kazakhstan”. Now, the National Security Committee and its chief Karim Masimov have gained the de-jure access to the state agencies’ inner-workings and have the de-facto possibility to pressure them even more.

You can find the full version of the decree on the Zakon.kz website (though it does not provide free access for the users) or on the Nomad.su site but this one gives an incorrect date.

Here are some key passages from the decree (bolding – ours).

“The National Security Committee governs, within the limits of its authorities, the unified system of the national security agencies of the Republic of Kazakhstan…, the intelligence, counter-intelligence, operative search activities, the state border security, the implementation of the tasks of the secret governmental communication channel, the inter-departmental coordination on the subjects related to its capabilities and conducts the single policy in the sphere of ensuring the state secrets safety. The National Security Committee is Kazakhstan’s official agency whose task is to preserve the state secrets”.

There are also some subsections added.

Subsections 64-24: (NSC) “conducts the single state policy in the sphere of protecting the state secrets within the state agencies and organizations, develops and improves the system of the state secrets security”;

Subsections 64-25: “develops the system of the legal, administrative, economic, technological, IT, and cryptographic means to secure the state secrets”;

Subsections 64-26: “organizes the training and retraining of the state security departments personnel”;

Subsections 64-27: “provides the practical and methodological assistance to the state agencies and organizations on the matters of the state secrets safety”.

Thus, the authorities to guide the state secrets of Kazakhstan have shifted from the Government Office to the NSC.  De-facto, this means reinforcing the status of the agency and its leader Karim Masimov.

In addition to the body of the NSC seconded employees, the agency receives one more possibility to influence practically all the more or less significant state and quasi-state institutes in the country. Because now the divisions associated with the matters of the state secrets security including giving information access to staff members, keeping secret documents, providing the safety of correspondence will be under the direct supervision of the NSC.

Therefore, Karim Masimov, his deputies and the heads of the NSC departments, both in the central and the local offices, can, first, directly influence the personnel decisions of the state and quasi-state institutes giving (or not giving) the information access to new employees including senior officers and, second, receive additional information of what is going on in these institutes since their staff is now directly dependent on them.

So, Karim Masimov, once again, defeats his political opponents in Akorda. And this is especially  significant both for him and his allies since the power transit in Kazakhstan has, de-facto, begun.


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