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Kazakhstan Says Russia to Withdraw Troops in Wake of Unrest

Russia-led forces that entered Kazakhstan to support the government after protests caused instability will begin to withdraw in two days. The Kazakh president announced the withdrawal on Tuesday as he named a loyalist as prime minister. President Kassym Jomart Tokayev stated that the mission had been successful. The stage-by-stage pullout of contingents of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) will take no more than 10 days. The CSTO is a military alliance that includes several former Soviet states.

Last week Russia deployed more than 2,000 troops at Mr. Tokayev’s request due to the protests over a sharp rise in fuel prices. The fuel prices sparked deadly unrest furthered by wider social and political discontent. According to Kazakh officials, the crisis was caused by outside forces that intentionally hijacked peaceful demonstrations. On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin defended the deployment of Russian troops as part of the security alliance.

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