Kazakhstan detains former national security chief on suspicion of treason

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The erstwhile caput of Kazakhstan’s home quality bureau has been detained connected suspicion of precocious treason, the bureau said, aft helium was fired amid convulsive protests.

The National Security Committee, oregon KNB, said successful a connection connected Saturday that its erstwhile main Karim Masimov had been detained connected Thursday aft it launched an probe into charges of precocious treason.

“On suspicion of committing this crime, erstwhile president of the KNB, K.K. Masimov was detained and placed successful a impermanent detention centre, on with others,” the connection said.

Dozens person died and nationalist buildings crossed Kazakhstan person been ransacked and torched successful the worst unit experienced by the erstwhile Soviet republic successful 30 years of independence.

Security forces appeared to person reclaimed the streets of Kazakhstan’s main metropolis connected Friday aft days of violence, and the Russian-backed president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said helium had ordered his troops to sprout to termination to enactment down a countrywide uprising.

At Tokayev’s invitation, a Russia-led subject confederation has been deployed astatine a clip of precocious hostility successful East-West relations. Russia and the United States are gearing up for talks adjacent week connected the Ukraine crisis.

US caput of authorities Antony Blinken warned connected Friday that Kazakhstan volition find it hard to little Russian power aft inviting successful troops to quell unrest.

“One acquisition successful caller past is that erstwhile Russians are successful your house, it’s sometimes precise hard to get them to leave,” Blinken said.

On Friday the US State Department besides authorised non-emergency consulate employees and the household members of each unit to permission Kazakhstan, informing its citizens that “violent protests whitethorn severely interaction the US Embassy’s quality to supply consular services”.

Massimov is wide viewed arsenic a adjacent state of erstwhile president Nursultan Nazarbayev. He has doubly been premier curate and has besides served arsenic caput of the statesmanlike medication nether Nazarbayev.

Nazarbayev, 81, was the longest-serving ruler of an ex-Soviet authorities until helium turned implicit the presidency to Tokayev successful 2019. His household is wide believed to person retained power successful Nur-Sultan, the purpose-built superior that bears his name.

The interior ministry has said 26 protesters were killed successful the clashes implicit the past week, arsenic good arsenic 18 radical from constabulary and information forces. Witness reports of shootouts and casualties suggest that the existent figures whitethorn beryllium considerably higher. More than 3,800 radical had been detained, the ministry said.

In a televised code connected Friday, Tokayev said helium had personally fixed the bid to usage lethal unit successful caller days, and besides blamed “so-called escaped media outlets” for helping to instrumentality unrest.

“Abroad determination are calls for the 2 sides to clasp negotiations for a peaceful resolution,” helium said. “What idiocy. What benignant of negotiations tin you person with criminals? We were dealing with equipped and well-prepared bandits, some section and foreign. Bandits and terrorists, who should beryllium destroyed. This volition hap successful the nearest time.”

The protests were sparked this week by a abrupt emergence successful substance prices combined with long-simmering frustrations implicit the governmental and economical concern successful the country. The peaceful demonstrations turned convulsive connected Wednesday, with crowds seizing authorities buildings and wide looting.

With Agence France-Presse and Reuters