- Sputnik International, 1920, 06.01.2022
Protests in Kazakhstan
On 2 January, Kazakhstan was hit by protests in the wake of a spike in fuel prices. The riots turned violent on 4 January, leading to clashes between protesters and the police, looting, killings, and deepening insecurity. The president has declared a nationwide state of emergency.

Kazakh President Urges Nation Against Provocations Amid Mass Protests, Declares State of Emergency

© Screenshot/Hanna LiubakovaScreenshot captures moments that flash grenades were deployed in Almaty, Kazakhstan amid ongoing protests over gas prices.
Screenshot captures moments that flash grenades were deployed in Almaty, Kazakhstan amid ongoing protests over gas prices. - Sputnik International, 1920, 04.01.2022
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MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev on Tuesday addressed the nation with the call not to succumb to internal and external provocations amid rallies against increased gas prices. Hours later, his office announced that a state of emergency was implemented until January 19 in Almaty and for the province of Mangystau.
"Dear fellow citizens, I am again addressing you. Show prudence and do not succumb to internal and external provocations, to the euphoria of rallies and permissiveness," Tokayev said in a video address to the nation.
He said the government meeting on socioeconomic issues will be held on Wednesday and that all legitimate demands of protesters will be taken into account.
Tokayev also highlighted that the government "will not fall" amid the protests and called for mutual understanding and trust. The president also pointed out that calls for attacks on civil and military offices are against the law and such actions will be punished.
Tokayev also called on younger population "not to ruin their future and lives of their relatives" by participating in the rallies.
Hours after the Kazakh president's remarks, a state of emergency was declared in the Almaty and Mangystau region.
"In light of the aggravated situation, to maintain public safety, restore lawfulness and public order, defend rights and freedoms of the citizens, the head of state, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev signed a decree to impose a state of emergency in the Mangystau Province and the city of Almaty," the office said in a statement, adding that it will last from Wednesday to January 19.
Tokayev's remarks came as reports detailed clashes between protesters and law enforcement officers on the central square of the Kazakh city of Almaty, with police firing tear gas.
Video footage by Sputnik correspondent Alexander Miroglov earlier captured the moment that flash grenades were deployed by authorities to quell demonstrations in Almaty. The central square was said to have been covered with pungent gas that made it difficult to breathe.
Correspondents on the scene have reported that nearly 1,000 individuals had gathered at the square, the majority of whom have since been dispersed. Groups of protesters are said to have been detained on nearby streets.
Since the beginning of 2022, residents of Aktau and Zhanaozen cities of the Mangystau region of Kazakhstan have been rallying against a twofold increase of liquefied gas prices. The Atyrau and West Kazakhstan regions then joined the protests. Earlier this day, the government commission promised protesters to decrease gas prices and not to prosecute those participating in rallies.
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