Global Affairs

Power play in Kazakhstan

Fuel prices may have sparked off the recent outbreak of unrest but domestic political rivalry and regional contests for influence are now part of the interplay of factors determining the country’s future.

Kazakh policemen during protests over a hike in energy prices in Almaty, Kazakhstan, on Jan 5, 2022. PHOTO: EPA-EFE
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"The constitutional order has been largely restored," said Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, a week after his country was shaken by the largest wave of political unrest since its independence from the Soviet Union more than three decades ago.

But the fact that Mr Tokayev had to rely on a 3,000-strong Russian-led military contingent in order to restore order may have long-term consequences for political dynamics throughout Central Asia.

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