In March 2008 I visited Alamaty, the capital city of Kazakhstan. Almaty has a rich history. It was originated from a small settlement in the middle of the Great Silk Road. This city experienced rises and falls, was the witness of wars and revolutions, was destroyed and almost moved off the face of the earth by the natural disasters. From 1867 its name was Verny (“Faithful” in Russian), from 1921 till 1993 it was named Alma-Ata, since 1993 it has the contemporary name Almaty.
Till 1997 it was the capital of Kazakstan, but then the capital was moved to Astana, The North Kazakstan. Nevertheless Almaty as the biggest city of Kazakhstan has the status of administrative, educational, economical and cultural center. Having been placed on the Asian crossroads from the ancient time it was an oasis for merchants caravans.
Now Almaty is inhabited by many nationalities: Kazaks, Russians, Ukrainians, Koreans, Germans, Tatars, Uzbeks, Jews, Poles and other. There are 25 national cultural Centers. There are main world confessions with more then 30 doctrine and persuasions.