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Jan 10, 2022
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China will send troops to Kazakhstan if Russia fails

In the photo: military personnel of the Chinese armed forces

In the photo: servicemen of the armed forces of China (Photo: Vladimir Smirnov / TASS)

The fact that the situation in Kazakhstan is contradictory, despite the soothing news, and is still explosive, is evidenced by at least the fact of the continuing strengthening of the Russian military peacekeeping contingent in Kazakhstan.

As Zvezda, the mouthpiece of the RF Ministry of Defense, writes on January 8, “at the airport in the Ivanovo region, the loading of military personnel and airborne equipment on Il-76 military transport aircraft, departing for the Republic of Kazakhstan, has begun. It is planned to carry out more than 20 flights by military transport aircraft … Earlier, advanced units from the Russian peacekeeping contingent arrived on the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan and began to fulfill the assigned tasks. “

The day before, the President of China Xi Jinping gave strong support Kasymu-Jomartu Tokayev, stating that the President of Kazakhstan took decisive and effective action at a critical time to quickly stabilize the situation.

In his message published by the Xinhua News Agency, Xi said China strongly rejects any attempts by outside forces to cause unrest and provoke “color revolutions” in Kazakhstan, as well as any attempts to damage China’s friendship with Kazakhstan and disrupt cooperation between the two countries. Such a statement is worth a lot, especially against the background of the incomprehensible reaction of the West to the terrorist threat to the largest Central Asian country.

Xi Jinping’s unequivocal support was expressed on the day when Tokayev, having received real Russian military assistance, ordered law enforcement officers to shoot without warning in the event of a real threat from the militants. Obviously, Nur-Sultan is supported by both Moscow and Beijing, while Washington and Brussels are sluggish, but traditionally criticize “shooting to kill.”

An official representative of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, commenting on the situation on the Chinese-Kazakh border in the light of current events in Kazakhstan, told TASS that the PRC is ready to continue close cooperation with Kazakhstan to maintain peace and tranquility in the border regions.

As you know, Nur-Sultan and Beijing are serious economic partners, in particular, about a fifth of China’s gas imports from Kazakhstan and, in general, in the geopolitical project of the new “Silk Road” called “One Belt – One Road”, it is gigantic Kazakhstan that plays key role in Central Asia.

If the first wave of Chinese investments in Kazakhstan (from 2007 to 2013) was mainly focused on the production of hydrocarbons and the construction of gas and oil pipelines, then the second wave is aimed at creating a powerful industry. Here are just a few joint projects – a cement plant with a design capacity of 900 thousand tons per year, a glass production plant “Orda” and a new bus plant “Yutong” under construction.

Meanwhile, Nur-Sultan not only regularly pays Beijing on its debts, but also reduces the total debt. For reference: in 2013, all types of Chinese loans to Kazakhstan exceeded $ 15.8 billion, and in 2020 they amounted to less than $ 8.8 billion. Moreover, the money fat that the Tokayev government has received allows it to co-finance some Chinese-Kazakh projects, which is generally a rarity. for developing countries. For example, the construction by China National Chemical Engineering in Atyrau of a polypropylene plant worth $ 2.6 billion is paid in an approximate ratio of 3: 1 by the Chinese Development Bank and the National Welfare Fund of Kazakhstan.

Nur-Sultan supplies not only gas and oil to Beijing, but also copper, uranium, agricultural products, which makes China look differently at the stability of its western neighbor. By the way, some Western media, as soon as the bloody riots began in this Asian country, wrote with quiet joy that “Chinese billions were crying.”

However, on January 6, the Chinese government newspaper Global Times denied such news stories, saying, “Chinese businesses and industry insiders said the turmoil will not have much of an impact as oil and gas transportation is technically reliable. Local companies have said they are ready (to protect factories and wells) and the Kazakh government will also take appropriate measures to ensure safety. ”

According to the latest information, the problems were not with the Chinese, but with the American company Chevron, which owns 50% of the giant Tengiz oil field. As The Wall Street Journal writes, citing a Chevron spokesman, “production operations are ongoing, but there has been a temporary adjustment in production due to logistics … A number of contractor employees have gathered at the Tengiz field in support of protests throughout Kazakhstan.” Cameco, a Canadian uranium mining company, also spoke about the problems. Its representatives do not rule out a drop in production if the protests intensify.

Meanwhile, on January 5, in the midst of protests Zhang Xiao, China’s Ambassador to Kazakhstan, wrote an optimistic post on his Facebook account: “In 2021, the number of freight trains running on China-Europe routes in both directions grew rapidly, amid safe and smooth operation. Freight train services increased by 22% year-on-year to 15,000 in 2021. During this period, freight trains carried a total of 1.46 million standard containers, up 29% from 2020. ”

Zhang Xiao expressed confidence that the security of the transport corridor will be at the highest level due to joint actions. Thus, it is not only Moscow that categorically does not want a terrorist territory under the control of ISIS to appear next to Russia, instead of a calm state. But China, which has invested tens of billions of dollars in Kazakhstan, does not want this either to a lesser extent.

It is logical that Beijing unequivocally supported Tokayev in his request to the CSTO to send troops to restore order. Moreover, the Chinese are sending a signal that they themselves are ready to introduce their forces. Thus, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, in which the PRC occupies a leading position, made an important statement: “We recognize the timeliness of the measures taken by the leadership of the Republic of Kazakhstan to normalize the situation in the country and establish a peaceful dialogue within the framework of the constitutional and legal field.”

Moreover, the SCO regional anti-terrorist structure has expressed its readiness to provide emergency assistance if necessary. It should be understood this way: if the CSTO fails to put things in order (which is unlikely), China will do it. In any case, they made it clear to the terrorists that Beijing is ready to fight for its multi-billion dollar investments.

At the same time, one should distinguish between the legitimate demands of Protestants who demand social justice and bandits who take advantage of the moment. Fighting the latter does not negate the support of the former. Indeed, the current leadership of Kazakhstan fully bears its share of responsibility for the bloodshed that happened.


* “Islamic State” (IS, ISIS) by the decision of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation of December 29, 2014 was recognized as a terrorist organization, its activities on the territory of Russia are prohibited.

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