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Number of Kazakh law enforcers killed in riots climbs to 18 - Interior Ministry

Some 748 police officers and National Guard servicemen were injured

NUR-SULTAN, January 6. /TASS/. Number of Kazakhstan’s law enforcement agents killed in clashes with participants of mass riots has risen to 18, the Central Asian republic’s Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

"Eighteen law enforcement agents have been killed. Some 748 police officers and National Guard servicemen were injured," the Tengrinews agency said in its Telegram channel, citing the ministry. A total of 2,298 people have been detained during the effort to curb the riots.

Earlier on Thursday, the commandant's headquarters in Almaty reported that 13 law enforcers were killed in the clashes in the city.

On Thursday, Kazakhstan’s military in Almaty ordered the protesters through loudspeakers to leave the Republic Square, warning that they would open fire. Later the shooting began. Eyewitnesses said several people died.

Protests flared up in several cities of Kazakhstan on January 2. Later they erupted in other cities, including in Almaty, and on January 5 snowballed into mass riots and violence, along with looting and attacks on state buildings. As a result, more than 1,000 people were hurt and deaths have been reported.

Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has requested assistance of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, a post-Soviet security bloc. The first units of peacekeepers have started fulfilling their assigned tasks in Kazakhstan.