Dozens of people, including 12 police officers, were killed, and one officer was beheaded, in one of the world’s largest countries Thursday during violent protests that saw government buildings set on fire.
Dozens of demonstrators were killed as they stormed Kazakhstan’s presidential palace and the mayor’s office in the nation’s largest city on Wednesday, and the group continued to try to invade administrative buildings overnight.
The protesters “have been eliminated and their identities are being established,” Saltanat Azirbek, a spokesperson for the city police department in Almaty, Kazakhstan.
Approximately 1,000 were injured and 400 were hospitalized as a result of the protests that began Sunday in Kazakhstan’s western Mangistau region.
The protests came after the government lifted caps on the price of gasoline, causing prices to double.
A Russian-led intergovernmental military alliance called the Collective Security Treaty was dispatched to Kazakhstan on Wednesday “to stabilize and normalize the situation.”
The group was comprised of armed forces from Russian, Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan, and the deployment would only be temporary. Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said Wednesday that he called for assistance to aid in what he believed to be a terrorist threat.