President of Kazakhstan Kassym-Jomart Tokayev announced the withdrawal of the peacekeeping forces of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) from the country on January 13, Interfax reports.
"Tomorrow the organized withdrawal of the CSTO peacekeeping contingent will begin," Tokayev said.
According to Tokayev, he assesses the CSTO mission in Kazakhstan as successful. He noted that the mission played an important role in stabilizing the situation.
"The CSTO mission is assessed as very successful. Once again, I thank my fellow heads of state. The presence of the CSTO peacekeeping contingent in Kazakhstan, including Almaty, played a very important role in stabilizing the situation in our country. Of course, this was of great psychological importance to repel the aggression of terrorists and bandits," Tokayev said.
As it was reported, protests in Kazakhstan began against the background of rising gas prices, clashes with security forces, seizure of office buildings and looting began in the cities.
By January 4, protests had spread across the country. Clashes broke out between protesters and security forces in several major cities, including Almaty. Kazakhstan has declared a critical level of the terrorist threat. The President of the Republic Kasim-Jomart Tokayev asked for help from the CSTO member states. The organization agreed to send a peacekeeping contingent to the country for a limited period.
As spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Oleh Nikolenko said on January 9, Almaty has the largest number of Ukrainians who cannot leave Kazakhstan due to canceled flights - 116 citizens. Fortunately, there are no Ukrainians killed, injured, or detained during the mass protests.
That same day, a plane with 33 Ukrainians took off from Nur-Sultan (Kazakhstan) and later successfully landed at the Boryspil airport. According to Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, subsequent flights from Nur-Sultan are scheduled for January 13 and 16.