Kazakhstan is greeting Independence Day in style on December 16, with a string of celebrations to mark this year’s special anniversary – 22 years since the oil-rich Central Asian nation was propelled into statehood as the Soviet Union collapsed. Kazakhstan was the last of the former Soviet Republics to declare its independence on December 16, 1991. Even though the Supreme Council of the Kazakh SSR accepted the Declaration on State Sovereignty of the Kazakh SSR on October 25, 1990, it wasn’t until December 16, 1991 that Kazakhstan adopted the constitutional law on the independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan.
President Nursultan Nazarbayev and government members, accompanied by politicians and public figures, usually head festivities in the presidential palace, Ak Orda, in Astana, capital city of Kazakhstan.
Kazakhs take the opportunity of the day off to visit friends and family, bringing gifts like flowers or candies. It is usual to organize tournaments with traditional games like horse races surrounded by other amusing activities and popular games.
In 2011, on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the declaration of independence, President Nazarbayev inaugurated an Arch reminiscent of Paris’s Arc de Triomphe, which since has become a landmark of Astana.
Romania recognized the independence of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the very day of the declaration of independence. In the margins of the Romanian Foreign Minister’s visit to Kazakhstan in July 1992, the Protocol on establishing diplomatic relations was signed. The diplomatic mission of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Romania was opened in September 2003 and in 2012 it was raised to the rank of embassy.