Russia slams Blinken 'joke' on Kazakhstan
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's attempt to "joke" about the situation in Kazakhstan was met with a Russian rebuttal in light of tensions between the two nations.
Russia slammed Saturday US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's comments on the crisis in Kazakhstan as "boorish" after he said the Central Asian nation would be saddled with Russian presence after asking Moscow to send troops for backup in light of unrest.
"US Secretary of State Antony Blinken tried to make a funny joke today about the tragic events in Kazakhstan," Russia's foreign ministry said in a statement on Facebook.
"A boorish attempt, but then again not his first one," it added, noting that Blinken "ridiculed a totally legitimate response" of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation (CSTO).
"I think one lesson in recent history is that once Russians are in your house, it's sometimes very difficult to get them to leave," Blinken told reporters on Friday.
The Russian Foreign Ministry rebutted by saying, "If Antony Blinken is so into history lessons, here's one that comes to mind: When Americans are in your house, it can be difficult to stay alive, not being robbed or raped."
Moscow cited a number of US' victims, calling them "unfortunate peoples who had the bad luck to see these uninvited guests at their doorstep," naming Native Americans, Koreans, Vietnamese, and Syrians, among others.
Riots started in Kazakhstan on Tuesday night when thousands of demonstrators took to the street to protest against the surging gas prices in the Central Asian nation. Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev then declared a state of emergency in the west of the country and Almaty.
Tokayev had appealed to the CSTO for help in quelling protests across the country that he said were led by "terrorist gangs".
The presidential actions came after armed groups killed 13 law enforcement officers and wounded 353 others.
The bodies of two slain police officers were found beheaded.
It is unclear how many troops the CSTO will send in, but Russian media said the number is not likely to exceed 5,000.
The US-Russian altercation comes in light of very tense relations between Washington and Moscow over Ukraine, whom the west is accusing Russia of planning to invade.
Moscow has continuously denied these claims, and even Kyiv backed Russia in that regard, denying the western reports of a military build-up near its borders.