Kazakh authorities say they have detained nearly 1,700 more people in the last 24 hours for their alleged participation in anti-government protests last week.
The 1,678 arrests reported by authorities in Almaty, the country’s largest city and the site of the most violent clashes during the unrest, brought the total number of detainees to about 12,000 since the demonstrations started on 2nd January.
Protests erupted over soaring fuel prices in the Central Asian nation of 19 million people and quickly spread across the country.
At least 160 people have been killed, in the deadliest outburst of violence since it gained independence more than 30 years ago.
In Almaty, protesters set government buildings on fire and briefly seized the airport, while security forces responded with live rounds and stun grenades.
Speaking alongside Kazakhstan’s President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev, Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed victory in defending Kazakhstan from what he described as a foreign-backed “terrorist” uprising.