By Elena Teslova
Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev has enacted a new Latin version of the Kazakh alphabet, according to the head of state’s official website on Tuesday.
The new list contains 32 characters representing specific sounds of the Kazakh language that have been defined with the help of acute accents. For instance, «ә» defines as «á», «ş» and «ç» replaced by «sh» and «ch», «ý» is «u», but «у» is «ı».
The new alphabet version also contains fewer characters with an apostrophe: six instead of nine.
In October 2017, Nazarbayev signed a decree on the phased transition of the Kazakh alphabet from Cyrillic into Latin script by 2025.
The decree included an alphabet consisting of 32 characters, nine of which were written with apostrophes. For example, the Republic of Kazakhstan would be written as Qazaqstan Respybli'kasy. This could greatly complicate reading and writing, so a decision to rework the alphabet was made.
From 1940, Kazakhstan had been using the Kazakh alphabet based on Cyrillic alphabet that includes 42 letters. From the 11th century and up to 1927, a modified Arabic script was used. Between 1927 and 1940, Kazakhs used the Latin script.