Kazakhstan: the consequences of the protests and the military intervention
January 13th, 2022 via Zoom
5 PM (Minsk Time, GMT + 3)
4 PM (UTC +2) - Kyiv | Riga | Vilnius
3 PM (UTC +1) - Berlin | Warsaw | Prague | Brussels
Pre-registration is required for access, details are below.
The New Year in Kazakhstan began with protests in large cities in the west of the country. The protesters originally demanded the return of the previous gas prices. The authorities made concessions (gas prices were cut and the government was dismissed), but the protests quickly escalated. The protesters demanded former president Nursultan Nazarbayev withdraws from politics and the resignation of current president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev. The protests escalated into armed clashes, a state of emergency was declared, and, at the request of the authorities, military men from the CSTO countries arrived in Kazakhstan.
The violence does not stop in Kazakhstan, dozens were killed, hundreds were wounded, and thousands were detained. Tokayev removed Nazarbayev from the post of head of the Security Council; in the official reports, the capital is no longer called Nur-Sultan. Against the background of Nazarbayev's silence, there are rumours that he was either arrested or left the country together with his relatives. Due to the internet outages in Kazakhstan and violence against journalists, the information about what’s going on in the country is hard to obtain and is often conflicting.
Today’s open questions include:
● What are the main causes and likely consequences of the Kazakh protests? Is the Nazarbayev era, which had lasted for 30 years, really ended in one week?
● CSTO peacekeepers in Kazakhstan: is it compliance with the articles of the organization or a military intervention? What consequences will this have?
● How will the developments in Kazakhstan affect Belarus? What conclusions will the authorities and society draw?
● Arkady Dubnov, political scientist, expert on Central Asia;
● Yuriy Poyta, New Geopolitics Research Network, Head of Asia-Pacific Section;
● Arseny Sivitsky, co-founder and director of the Center for Strategic and Foreign Policy Studies;
● Vital Tsyhankou, political columnist for Radio Liberty, host of the Razmova program on Belsat TV;
● Ekaterina Deikalo, lawyer with a specialization in international law, candidate of legal sciences.
- Anton Ruliou (Belarus in Focus Information Office/Press Club Belarus)
- Vadim Mojeiko (BISS).
Working languages: Belarusian, Russian with interpretation into English
Video recording is envisaged. The Chatham House Rule will apply upon the participant’s prior notice and will be off the record.
How to participate (please note that you will not be able to join the meeting after it starts):
- To join the online discussion, please fill out the Google Form
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• Belarus in Focus Information Office
• Press Club Belarus
• Nashe Mnenie
• Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies (BISS)