Kazakhstan: Terrorists block entry to hospitals, behead police officers
The country has witnessed extremely high tension in the last few days as protestors turn hostile.
Sputnik has reported that two large hospitals in Almaty, Kazakhstan have been surrounded by armed groups and are blocking entry and exit to medical staff and patients.
An anti-terrorism operation was broadcast on TV, warning citizens to take shelter and avoid windows.
13 law enforcement officers were killed and 353 others were injured in the countrywide turmoil, according to the channel Khabar 24.
According to the reports, protestors destroyed the offices of five stations in Almaty and stormed the media cluster that contains several broadcasting stations.
Additionally, one employee of Qazaqstan TV was injured in the assault.
According to the commandant's office, the bodies of two slain police officers were discovered beheaded, indicating the "terrorist intention" behind the militant armed groups in Almaty.
Sputnik also reported heavy gunfire and armed confrontations taking place in Republic Square in Almaty. The correspondent for Kazakhstan noted the presence of thick fog obstruction vision. There is no conclusive information as of yet regarding details of the gunfire.
Kazakhstan president: Nation under attack by foreign-trained gangs
Early today in a televised address, Kazakhstan's president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev announced that “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."
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".
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.
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.