Demarcation of Russian-Kazakh border begun
(26 May 2009)
On 23 May the first boundary marker along the Russian-Kazakh border, the longest single contiguous land boundary in the world, was erected in the area of Karaozek-Kotyayevka border crossing on the Friendship Bridge where Kazakhstan’s Atyrau and Russia’s Astrakhan provinces meet.
The two countries have never had contentious boundary issues flare into disputes in the past and they completed the delimitation of their common boundary peacefully in 2005. Kazakhstan Ambassador Vyachelsaw Gizzatov, part of the Kazakh-Russian Joint Commission on State Border Demarcation, pointed out that the demarcation process is being carried out ‘in a spirit of mutual understanding’. Considering that the boundary between Russia and Kazakhstan is approximately 7,591 km long, Vladimir Volkov, Russian co-head of the Kazakh-Russian Joint Commission, declared it will take about 10 to 15 years for the demarcation to be completed.
Sources: ‘Kazakhstan, Russia to start demarcation of border’ Kazinform, 18 May 2009; ‘Demarcation of Russian-Kazakh border to continue for 10-15 years’ Interfax: Russia & CIS General Newswire, 25 May 2009; ‘First boundary sign opened on Russia-Kazakh state border’ Itar Tass, 23 May 2009.