The mounting unrest prompted President Tokayev to seek help from the Collective Security Treaty Organization, which has decided to deploy peacekeeping forces to this country.
Speaking to the state news channel Khabar-24, Police spokeswoman Saltanat Azirbek said that "dozens of attackers were liquidated," referring to the citizens who attempted to storm administrative buildings and the police department in Almaty city on Wednesday night.
Over 1,000 people were injured across Kazakhstan with almost 400 of them hospitalized as a result of the violent protests over the past days. On Wednesday, the clashes between security forces and rioters also left 353 police officers injured and 12 law enforcement officers dead, two of whom were beheaded. The "anti-terrorist" special operation continues in the city and police urged residents to refrain from leaving home.
The protests sparked by dissatisfaction over surging fuel prices escalated on Wednesday, with protesters storming the main government building in Almaty, setting police vehicles on fire, and attacking the regional branch of the ruling Nur Otan party.
“The airports in Almaty and two other cities have been shut, and the Internet service was severely interrupted for the second day… Tens of thousands of people, some carrying clubs and shields, have taken to the streets in recent days in the worst protests the country has seen since gaining independence from the Soviet Union three decades ago,” CBC reported.
The mounting unrest prompted President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev to seek help from the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), which has decided to deploy peacekeeping forces to Kazakhstan.
Previously, Tokayev warned that he intends to "act as tough as possible" as the situation in the country becomes "extremely tense."
"Despite my repeated appeals for calm, individuals calling themselves 'protesters' continue to exacerbate the situation in the country," Tokayev said, acknowledging that about half of the Kazakh territory is currently engulfed in riots.