EU High Representative Josep Borrell noted that the Russian military sent to Kazakhstan against the background of recent mass protests may stay for a while.
“Experience shows that when the Russians come, it’s hard for them to leave” – Borrell said.
The diplomat informs that the intervention of Russian troops in Kazakhstan can be considered an attempt by Vladimir Putin to return the former USSR.
Josep Borrell also said that Russia is a party to the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, so any dialogue on this topic should take place only with the participation of its representatives.
A state of emergency was declared throughout Kazakhstan amid massive protests that began on January 2. The President of Kazakhstan, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, appealed for help to the heads of state of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), in which the influence of the Russian Federation is decisive. Tokayev said that the events of recent days in Kazakhstan are a “terrorist threat” and “undermining the integrity of the state.” The CSTO announced its consent to the introduction of troops. The protests were sparked by a two-fold increase in the price of liquefied gas used as fuel for cars. The protesters put forward political demands, including a return to the 1993 Constitution. According to its provisions, Tokayev cannot be president due to exceeding the age limit. On January 5, Nursultan Nazarbayev left the post of head of the Security Council of Kazakhstan. The Security Council was headed by the incumbent President Tokayev. On the same day, the government of Kazakhstan resigned. President Tokayev gave instructions to introduce state regulation of prices for socially significant goods, gasoline and diesel fuel. The country has introduced a moratorium on increasing utility tariffs for the population for 180 days.