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When the Soviet Union collapsed, the international locations of Central Asia grew to become unbiased. With their newfound sovereignty got here all of the challenges of constructing an unbiased, environment friendly financial system with out the USSR’s monetary help. The Central Asian states achieved comparatively dynamic economies, however they continue to be poor and unstable. Along with excessive unemployment, insufficient residing requirements and low wages, the republics face the specter of worldwide terrorism and extremism in addition to smuggling. These are additionally threats to Russia, which after the tumultuous Nineties rebuilt itself and reasserted its sphere of affect, which incorporates Central Asia. Thus, to make sure its safety, it’s essential for the Kremlin that these areas be steady, peaceable and pro-Russian.
An in depth financial companion of Russia, Kazakhstan rang in 2022 with protests. There have been a number of elements for the unrest: a sudden, sharp enhance within the value of liquefied petroleum gasoline, earnings inequality, rising costs and a depreciating foreign money. The demonstrations began within the gas-producing metropolis of Zhanaozen within the west however quickly escalated and unfold, together with to Kazakhstan’s largest metropolis, Almaty. The protesters’ calls for expanded from financial to political, together with calling for the federal government’s resignation and the departure from politics of the nation’s first president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, who stepped down in 2019 however stays a strong determine within the shadows. With the assistance of troops from the Russia-led Collective Safety Treaty Group, Kazakh safety forces promptly put down the protests.