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Moscow: Foreign troops sent by other former Soviet republics to stabilize Kazakhstan after violent anti-government unrest broke out have now all left the country, the Ministry of Defence in the capital Nur-Sultan announced on Wednesday. President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev requested foreign assistance from the Russian-dominated Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) when protests against fuel price rises spiralled into riots that ultimately led to over 200 deaths. CSTO troops were in the oil and gas-rich republic for almost two weeks. Their deployment marked a first in the history of the alliance. Wednesday also saw the lifting of a state of emergency in the last few places where it remained in force, including in the country’s biggest city and former capital, Almaty, which saw the worst of the unrest. (dpa)
In the course of the unrest, Tokayev removed the last strings of power from his predecessor Nursultan Nazarbayev and his circle.
The 81-year-old Nazarbayev retained extensive powers in the country after stepping down as president in 2019, but has now lost the chairmanship of the country’s Security Council, one that was guaranteed to him for life by law.
The corresponding law has now been amended, Kanat Nurov, a member of Kazakhstan’s parliament, wrote on Facebook.
Nazarbayev said in a video address to the nation on Tuesday that President Tokayev had full power, and should now also become the leader of ruling party Nur Otan. An extraordinary party congress has now been scheduled for January 28.
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