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Jan 17, 2022
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Banker Ablyazov spoke about his role in the protests in Kazakhstan

A fugitive oligarch from Kazakhstan, Mukhtar Ablyazov, who lives in France, told RIA Novosti that he did not initiate protests in the republic on January 2, but called for more protests on January 3 and 4, when the authorities complied with the demands of the protesters and lowered gas prices.

“We organize protests every three weeks,” the banker quoted the agency as saying, “on December 16, one, on November 20, two, and on October 23, three.” According to Ablyazov, the January 2 protests in Zhanaozen and Aktau were spontaneous, but the opposition decided to use them for their own purposes.

On January 3, Ablyazov went live. “I called for joining and supporting… On January 4, seeing that the protest is gaining momentum… we have already published the algorithm of actions again,” the agency’s interlocutor said.

Further, the banker’s supporters began to coordinate the protest movement. According to Ablyazov, the headquarters of the opposition was in Kiev. At the same time, the banker claims that there were no militants who came from abroad at the protests.

Mukhtar Ablyazov has been living abroad for many years, at home the court found him guilty of organizing an extremist community and embezzling BTA Bank funds, the damage exceeds $7.5 billion. The former head of BTA Bank was sentenced in absentia to life imprisonment for the murder of business partner Yerzhan Tatishev in 2004.

Protests against the backdrop of rising gas prices in the republic began on January 2. Later they escalated into riots. After that, the President of Kazakhstan turned to the CSTO for help.

On January 6, peacekeepers from the Russian Federation, Belarus, Armenia, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan began to arrive in the republic. On January 13, their withdrawal began. It will run until January 19th.

The Prosecutor General’s Office of the Republic is investigating about 500 criminal cases initiated because of protests in the country. About 50 cases were opened on acts of terrorism, another 15 related to murders.

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