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Kazakhstan's President Nursultan Nazarbayev on Monday extended his grip on power in the oil-rich, ex-Soviet nation with 97.7 percent of ballots in an election slammed by Western observers as deeply flawed. Nazarbayev, who has run the huge Central Asian country since before the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, improved his already eye-popping scores in previous elections to win a fifth term in power. The Central Election Commission claimed a record turnout of 95.22 percent in Sunday's vote which was called a year ahead of schedule. Western observers slammed the lack of choice in Kazakhstan's early presidential election in which the country's deeply marginalised opposition did not field a candidate.
CENTENNIAL, Colo. (AP) — Colorado theater shooter James Holmes appeared with close-cropped hair and a calm demeanor as lawyers made their final motions before Monday's opening of the trial that will determine if he'll be executed, spend his life in prison, or be committed to a mental institution as criminally insane.