Kazakhstan president: Nation under attack by foreign-trained gangs
Witnesses reported shots were heard as the largest city sees its third day of clashes.
According to witnesses, shots were fired in Almaty on Thursday, Kazakhstan's largest city, when the military stormed the main city center.
The situation in Almaty is witnessing drastic military measures as the city enters its third day of clashes and protests.
According to Sputnik, dozens of people were killed as they attempted to storm the headquarters of police overnight in Almaty.
"An attempt to storm the police headquarters in Almaty was made overnight, and dozens of attackers were eliminated," the city's law enforcement agency said.
In a televised address, Kazakhstan's president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said: “Almaty was attacked, destroyed, vandalized, the residents of Almaty became victims of attacks by terrorists, bandits, therefore it is our duty … to take all possible actions to protect our state."
Tokayev had called to the bloc for assistance, condemning the conduct of "terrorists" and stating that the nation had been subjected to attacks by foreign-trained gangs.
The Kazakh president said he had appealed to the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) for help in quelling protests across the country that he said were led by "terrorist gangs".
Nikol Pashinyan, Armenia's prime minister, stated the CSTO, an alliance of Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan, will send troops to stabilize the Central Asian country.
The CSTO posted a statement on its website confirming the receipt of an appeal from Kazakhstan, confirming that the "CSTO Collective Security Council decided to deploy the CSTO Collective Peacekeeping Forces to the Republic of Kazakhstan for a limited period in order to stabilize and normalize the situation in the country."
On Wednesday night, it was reported that peacekeeping forces from a Russian-led military alliance would be dispatched to Kazakhstan to assist the government in regaining authority.
Kazakhstan and Russia have an economic union, and the two nations share a lengthy border.
State of emergency in Almaty
Tuesday, Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev signed into law a decree declaring a state of emergency in the west of the country and Almaty in light of demonstrations over surging gas prices.
In an effort to thwart demonstrators, the President dismissed the country's cabinet on Wednesday.
Confrontations resumed and spread to other regions in western Kazakhstan as protestors broke into the Mayor's office and gunshots were heard in the vicinity.
Kazakhstan's President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev addressed his country's unrest on Wednesday, promising a "strong" response to large protests over a New Year's energy price hike.
"As president, I am obliged to protect the safety and peace of our citizens, to worry about the integrity of Kazakhstan,” he added.
Kazakhstan's President added that "terrorist groups which received extensive training abroad" had also seized five planes at the airport in the country's biggest city Almaty.