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“Yellow” level of terrorist alert prolonged in Kazakhstan

15 July 2016 14:51 (UTC+04:00)
“Yellow” level of terrorist alert prolonged in Kazakhstan

By Nigar Abbasova

Kazakhstan has prolonged moderate “yellow” level of terror threat in the country for 30 days, RIA Novosti reported citing the Committee for National Security of Kazakhstan.

The yellow level means there’s information about potential attacks that needs to be verified. It also means a set of measures that security, law enforcement and emergency response agencies need to implement to increase their readiness, The Astana Times reported.

Local authorities have announced yellow level of terror threat across the country following the violent attacks that occurred in Aktobe on June 5. Authorities reacted to the outbreak of violence by deploying special forces and declaring an anti-terrorist operation. Red threat level declared in Aktobe was cancelled on June 12 following counter-terrorism operations.

Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev referred the developments to as signs of “color revolution” stating that the country would take tough measures to suppress extremists and terrorists. The president stated that criminals were receiving instructions from abroad.

Previously, Kazakh Interior Minister Kalmukhanbet Kasymov said that terrorists who carried out attacks in Kazakhstan received instructions from the territory of Syria.

Groups of gunmen attacked two weapon shops and military base in the northwestern Kazakh city of Aktobe. Eight persons were killed with 3 being military personnel, as many as 37 suffered injuries. A total of 18 criminals were killed and nine were taken into custody in an anti-terrorist operation.

Earlier, the country’s National Security Committee said that all participants of the recent attacks in Aktobe have been neutralized and arrested, and their weapons have been confiscated.

Aktobe was also targeted by attacker in May, 2011 when a 25-year old man detonated suicide bomb and blew himself up inside the office of the state security services. A suicide bomber wounded two bystanders. Prosecutor's office didn’t link the explosion to terrorism identifying a bomber as a member of a criminal group who was already under suspicion for other crimes.

Aktobe is one of three oil cities in the west of Kazakhstan, along with Aktau and Atyrau.

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Nigar Abbasova is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow her on Twitter: @nigyar_abbasova

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