Armed clashes continued in Almaty, according to the media, 164 people died


The demonstrations were triggered by a sharp rise in the prices of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), which many motorists in the country use as fuel, shortly after the New Year. From the city of Zanaozen, the protests spread to other parts of the country.

The tense situation occurred mainly in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty, where protesters attacked government buildings, looted shops and set cars on fire. Security forces bloodily suppressed the demonstrations. According to the Ministry of Health, 103 people died in Almaty alone. Authorities have previously said the dead are among the police.

At least three children aged four, 11 and 15 were killed in the riots, the Kazakhstan’s children’s ombudswoman said.

On Wednesday, President Kasym-Zhomart Tokayev asked a group of post-Soviet countries associated in the Collective Security Treaty Organization (ODKB) to help him quell the riots. About 2,500 troops led by Russian paratroopers have already arrived in Kazakhstan, who, according to Tokayev, primarily help guard strategic buildings.

On Friday, the president called the protesters terrorists and allowed security forces to fire on the protesters without warning with live bullets. He also said he did not intend to negotiate with the protesters.

The current unrest is described as the worst since the independence of the former Soviet republic three decades ago.

The first three Russian military planes with Russian citizens who requested evacuation from the country departed from the airport in Almaty today. This was announced by the Russian consulate in Almaty. 1,600 Russian citizens in Kazakhstan turned to Moscow for help in leaving Kazakhstan, said Russian diplomat spokeswoman Maria Zakharov.

Kazakh police have already detained almost 6,000 people due to protests

Clashes with protesters continued in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty, tonight, authorities said, according to Interfax. According to local media, shots were fired, but mostly allegedly warning. President Kasyma-Zhomark Tokajev’s press service said police had detained nearly 6,000 people, including many foreigners, since the start of the weekly protests. Today, local airlines in Kazakhstan canceled more than half of the planned domestic flights, mainly due to the situation in Almaty.

“Demonstrators are still putting up armed resistance. It’s stabilized, but sometimes fierce resistance breaks out,” Almaty Deputy Mayor Yerjan Babakumarov told one of the local television stations. Russian television Mir-24 reported today that the night in Almaty was relatively quiet, although gunfire could be heard in various parts of the city, but it seemed to be just warning shots.

In Almaty, as in the rest of the country, there is still a night curfew, the siren points out. After that, the streets become noticeably quieter and virtually no cars pass through them, Mir-24 describes.

According to reporters, the station is now the biggest problem with food supplies in Almaty, and the authorities are trying to ensure the supply of small shops and convenience stores in particular. Somewhere it is possible to pay by card after a few days outage and a marketplace should open soon.

Pharmacies operate in a limited mode, according to television, they have stocks of drugs for a month and some for a longer period. “Local authorities are urging residents to be careful, to comply with all security measures and to comply with military requirements,” Mir-24 said.

According to TASS, President Tokayev’s office said the authorities had arrested nearly 6,000 people, many of whom were foreigners. According to local media, the Ministry of the Interior reported 5135 detainees and 125 prosecutions.

The ministry also stated that the demonstrations caused 4.28 billion crowns in damage. According to the office, the protesters looted over 100 shops and banks and destroyed over 400 vehicles. “The situation is stable today in all regions of the country,” said Interior Minister Erlan Turgumbaev. He added that “the anti-terrorist operation continues to restore order in the country”.

The unrest that engulfed Kazakhstan this week is described as the worst since the independence of the former Soviet republic three decades ago. Dozens of deaths and hundreds of injuries were claimed by authorities.

According to today’s report from Kazakhstan’s children’s ombudswoman, a four-year-old girl died in a skirmish in Almaty on Friday when unspecified people started shooting at the car in which she was driving.

Protests erupted in Zhanozhen on Sunday, a day after the abolition of the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) price cap, which then doubled, affecting most motorists in the region.

Tokyev on Friday allowed security forces to fire on the protesters without warning with live bullets, while saying that he would not negotiate with protesters, which he described as terrorists. Meanwhile, at the president’s request, troops from the post-Soviet Collective Security Treaty Organization (ODKB), led by Russian paratroopers, arrived in the country.

The Kazakh authorities indefinitely closed Almaty International Airport, which was briefly controlled by protesters; according to the ministry of industry, operations will resume once the situation in the country stabilizes. The airport was originally scheduled to operate again from Monday. Across the country, 120 of a total of 224 scheduled domestic flights were canceled today.


Source: EuroZprávy.cz by eurozpravy.cz.

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