#AceNewsReport – Jan.07: A nationwide internet blackout has made it difficult to get a clear picture, but local media are reporting around 1,000 injuries, with 400 being treated in hospital and 62 in intensive care.
#AceDailyNews says according to local and international media Troops clashed with protesters in the main square of Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city, on Thursday morning: According to
// Metro UK Protests in the central Asian country have raged for three days as demonstrations on fuel prices turned into an anti-government movement, triggering the resignation of the entire Cabinet.
Gunshots were heard by Reuters journalists on the ground, and police spokeswoman Saltanat Azirbek later said dozens of people had been killed.
President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has called on Russia to help him, and promised to be as harsh as necessary to quell the violence.
A Russian-led security bloc and the Collective Security Treaty Organisation – a post-Soviet Eurasian alliance – responded by sending in armed forces last night.
At least eight police officers and national guards have been killed in the unrest. No official reports of civilian casualties have been released.
Kazakhstan has been governed by the same party since gaining independence from the Soviet Union in 1991.
It wins most elections with almost 100% of the vote and there is ‘no effective political opposition’, according to the BBC.
Despite having extensive oil reserves, many people in Kazakhstan, which borders Russia and China, live in poverty.
It’s believed to have caused much of the discontent with the government.
The turmoil started on Sunday, when people in the western city of Zhanaozen began protesting against fuel becoming more expensive.
Zhanaozen is said to harbour strong anti-government feelings after police shot dead at least 15 people following oil-worker strike in 2011.
Demonstrations spread to bigger cities, including the capital, and things escalated until both the presidential residence and the mayor’s office were set on fire.
Staff at Kazakhstan’s main airport also had to flee the crowds.
Forces have repeatedly clashed with citizens, using water cannons, tear gas and concussion grenades amid freezing temperatures.
Mr Tokayev dubbed the protesters foreign-trained ‘terrorist bands’ who are ‘financially motivated’ – but he has promised political reforms and a new Cabinet.
He declared a two-week state of emergency which has seen curfews and restrictions on travel.
The National Bank of Kazakhstan has also suspended all financial institutions, while access to the internet is difficult, if not impossible, all over the country.
#AceNewsDesk report ………….Published: Jan.07: 2021:
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