29 Sep 2017 18:02

Authors of Latin alphabet in Kazakhstan to consider 20 alternative alphabet options

ASTANA. Sept 29 (Interfax) - The Latin alphabet for the Kazakh language presented in Kazakhstan's parliament is not final, and other options are being considered, Yerbol Tleshov, director of the country's Shayakhmetov Coordination and Methodical Center for Language Development, said.

"After September 11 [the date the draft Latin alphabet was presented to the lower house of parliament], we received over 20 alphabet options. We will, of course, consider them," Tleshov told a press conference in Astana on Friday.

The Coordination and Methodical Center for Language Development has received over 1,600 proposals from citizens on the state language in general, on the alphabet, and the effect of the alphabet on public life, he said.

According to earlier reports, Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev instructed the government in April to draw up a schedule for switching Kazakh to a Latin writing system. Organization and methodological work should be carried out in the next two years," he said. Cyrillic characters will be used together with Latin characters at first after the switch, the president said.

On April 13, a working group created by the Kazakh Education and Science Ministry began working on putting the Kazakh alphabet into Latin characters. The draft Kazakh alphabet in Latin has already been presented to the country's parliament. The new alphabet is expected to contain 25 characters instead of the current 42.