Analysis, Central Asia, Side Feature

Nazarbayev is Asked to Make Islam the State Religion

On 12th September, IA “” published an open letter of Baktybay Ainabekov, a head of the religious association of Kazakhstan Haji, to the President of Kazakhstan Nursultan Nazarbayev. The letter says, “One of the main shortcomings of our Constitution – the phrase “religion is separated from the state” – a relic, inherited from the atheism of the Soviet past, and remaining unchanged. Such common phrases as “we are a secular state, a secular state does not deny religion, ensures the freedom of religion and ensures the equal rights for all religions”, do not justify this law and cannot work on its implementation. Religion and secularism are different concepts. Religion is given by God even before the appearance of a man, for his upbringing, for this purpose the Koran appeared, meanwhile, secularism is a changeable concept. At its core, Islam is a religion that supports the state, it does not approve the opposition to authorities. Whoever is in power in Islam, it is believed that it is by the will of Allah. “Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, and those charged with authority on earth (power)”, – says in the Qur’an, thereby it makes clear that only with faith, the state can be strong. And if the whole world has recognized our republic a Muslim country, taking in the members of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, our Constitution is the law of the Kazakh state, our state language – Kazakh, the paragraph “religion is separated from the state” should be removed from the Constitution. Instead of this it is necessary to adopt the amendment: “The traditional religion of the state is Islam”.


The writer of the letter, Haji Baktybay Ainabekov, is either not sincere or does not really know what he is writing about. Nazarbayev’s regime policy towards the Muslims of the country is not as loyal to allow religion to interfere in the affairs of the state. If any other person, a simple Muslim, writes such a letter, he will immediately be sent to prison accused of terrorism and extremism, of an attempt to seize power and attacks on the Constitutional order of the country. But the writer of this letter, Haji Baktybay Ainabekov, is still at large and he is not being followed.

On the one hand, this letter will help the authorities to find out: – what do the people of Kazakhstan think about their religion? – Do the Muslims of Kazakhstan want to live under Sharia? – How many of them will respond to this letter? This letter will serve as an occasion to show the feelings of Muslims, jealously (protection) related to their religion. Thus the government will examine the Kazakhstan Muslims’ feelings and will count the number of – the pros and cons, which in turn will help the authorities to be ready to defend their secular system in advance.

On the other hand, this letter is misleading the Muslims of the country with false and far from truth slogans. The writer is not talking about a radical change of the constitution and the state system from secular to Islamic, but only is talking about necessity to remove from the Constitution the phrase “religion is separated from the state”. Instead of this it is necessary to adopt the amendment: “The traditional religion of the state is Islam”. And what will change? Nothing. As the system is based on secularism, and will remain secular, where Islam has no influence on the government and state laws. Allah Almighty says in His Noble Book:

الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ الإِسْلاَمَ دِينًا

Today I have perfected your deen for you and completed My blessing upon you and I am pleased with Islam as a deen for you.

(AL-Maaida, 5:3)

That is, Muslims are required to live under Sharia laws in the Islamic state. And Kazakhstan Muslims live in the Republic of Kazakhstan and live under no Sharia laws. Referring to the President of Kazakhstan, Nursultan Nazarbayev, it should be written that after the revelation of this ayah the full implementation of Islamic laws is a categorical requirement for all Muslims. It is now necessary to throw existing secular constitution and laws, and instead to establish Islamic constitution with Islamic laws.

The country will be an Islamic state only when the people will choose a governor who takes the oath to rule on the basis of the Qur’an and Sunnah. The boundaries of this state should be protected by Muslim forces of the State. The elected person on the post of Caliph must have all the required conditions to be a ruler and start immediately implement Sharia in life, including Islamic call to the world.

If we go back to the past of Muslims of Kazakhstan, we find that for many centuries, the Muslims of Kazakhstan guarded the northern borders of the once powerful Islamic Khilafah state and only Islam was implemented on their lands. And according to this, today the problems of the Muslims of Kazakhstan will not be solved with some kind of the amendment in the secular constitution, but only with the revival of the Islamic way of life in a righteous Islamic Khilafah State (Caliphate) upon the method of the Prophethood.

Eldar Khamzin

Member of the Central Media Office of Hizb ut Tahrir