Kazakhstan’s Air Astana brings back full network

Kazakhstan’s flag-carrier Air Astana has restored its full domestic and international network, almost two weeks after the country was embroiled in civil unrest.  

Air Astana will resume its regular flights to Colombo, Male, Phuket, London, Dubai, Antalya, Dushanbe, and Bishkek. The airline will use its fleet of 26 aircraft, including 13 Airbus A321s, five Airbus A320s, five Embraer E2s, and three Boeing 767 aircraft.  

On January 5, 2022, Almaty International Airport (ALA) was stormed by anti-government protesters, resulting in the suspension of flights. The airport was later retaken by governmental troops. As a result, airlines, including Lufthansa (LHAB) (LHA), flydubai, and Air Arabia, have suspended services to Almaty, Kazakhstan’s largest city.  

The protest was sparked by a sudden rise in the price of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) after the government lifted price caps at the beginning of the year. Due to its low cost, many Kazakhs converted their cars to run on LPG. The demonstration then turned into a revolt against economic inequality and government corruption.  

Consequently, President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev had called on members of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), which includes Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, and Tajikistan, for help in restoring peace in Kazakhstan. 

“An anti-terrorist operation has been launched. The forces of law and order are working hard. Constitutional order has largely been restored in all regions of the country,” Tokayev said on January 7, 2022, in a statement cited by Reuters. 

Russian led troops have returned from the central Asian country on January 15, 2022, after the Kazakh government restored control of Kazakhstan, according to Russia’s defense minister.  

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