Kazakhstan’s 8,000 protesters arrested after hard-line crackdown… Unrest subsides

Russian military vehicles arriving via military transport aircraft move from Almaty Airport in Kazakhstan on the 9th. Almaty = AFP Yonhap News

Massive protests in Kazakhstan, sparked by dissatisfaction with fuel price hikes, have entered a lull. It appears to be the result of a hard-line suppression that defined the protesters as terrorists and borrowed the power of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CTO), a security consultative body between states under the former Soviet Union.

At the CSTO video summit held on the 10th (local time), Kazakh President Kassim Jomart Tokayev described the incident as “an attempt by armed rebels to coup d’état.” “Terrorists, including foreign militants, were directly involved in the uprising,” he said.

Kazakhstan’s foreign ministry said members of Islamic extremist groups had facilitated the unrest. In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said, “Members of Islamic extremist organizations with experience in fighting in conflict zones took part in this unrest.” appears to be,” he said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin also said at a meeting that Kazakhstan had sent a peacekeeping force at the official request of the Kazakh leadership and said that the peacekeeping force had intercepted international terrorists. At the request of the Kazakhstan government, the CSTO sent a 2,500-person peacekeeping force to the field, including a Russian paratrooper. “The deployment of peacekeepers to Kazakhstan has been completed and will remain there until the situation is completely stable,” said Andrei Serdui, commander of the Russian paratroopers. Although large-scale protests did not take place that day in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty, sporadic fighting is said to have continued.

According to Reuters and AFP, the Ministry of Interior of Kazakhstan announced on the same day that 7,989 people were arrested on charges of taking part in the protests that continued from the 2nd to this day. State media in Russia and Kazakhstan reported that 164 people had died in the outbreak, citing a social networking service (SNS) post from the Ministry of Health of Kazakhstan the day before. However, Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Health has deleted the post, and authorities have not confirmed the number of deaths, Reuters said. Russia’s Sputnik news agency reported that “Internet has been restored in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty,” and that “the situation is gradually returning to normal.”

Youngbin Cho reporter



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