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A Russian peacekeeper in Almaty. Photo: Valery Sharifulin/TASS via Getty

Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev said Tuesday that troops from the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) would begin a phased withdrawal within two days, with a full exit taking no longer than 10 days.

Why it matters: Tokayev turned to Russia last week when mass protests exploded into violence in what he now claims was a coup attempt against him. Now that order seems to largely be restored, he's placing loyalists in key positions and asking the foreign "peacekeepers" to withdraw.

  • By inviting Russia in, Tokayev underscored Moscow's position as security guarantor for regimes in the region.
  • He may also have compromised his country’s sovereignty, though Vladimir Putin has said Russian troops will leave when Tokayev deems them no longer necessary.

Driving the news: Tokayev, who fired the Cabinet last Wednesday and has continued to clean house since, appointed former deputy prime minister Alikhan Smailov as prime minister on Tuesday.

  • Powerful intelligence chief Karim Masimov was arrested Saturday on suspicion of treason and replaced by Yermek Sagimbayev, who had been responsible for Tokayev's security as head of the State Security Service.
  • Most mysterious is the status of Nursultan Nazarbayev, the longtime former dictator who handed the presidency to Tokayev in 2019. He has vanished from view after being ousted as head of the security council last week. His spokesman denies reports that he fled the country.
  • Almaty remains under an 11pm-7am curfew, but residents have begun to return to work, per the WSJ. The government says around 160 people were killed during the unrest, and nearly 10,000 arrested.

What's next: Tokayev has promised an investigation into the "attempted coup" and how "agents of terrorism" had been able to obtain weapons and move against him without being exposed by the security services.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Updated Jan 14, 2022 - World

U.S. confirms Russia arrested REvil ransomware hackers

Russian President Vladimir Putin speaking in Moscow in June 2021. Photo: Alexei Nikolsky/TASS via Getty Images

Russia's security agency said Friday it arrested members of the Russia-based cyber gang REvil that was responsible for multiple massive ransomware attacks against U.S. companies last year.

The latest: A senior administration official confirmed on Friday afternoon that Russia informed the U.S. that it arrested the alleged hackers, including an individual responsible for the cyberattack that crippled the Colonial Pipeline.

7 mins ago - Health

CDC: Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations

Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Booster doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines overwhelmingly prevented hospitalizations from the Omicron variant, according to Center for Disease Control and Prevention data out Friday.

Driving the news: Pfizer and Moderna boosters were 90% effective at preventing Americans infected with the Omicron variant from ending up in the hospital, per the data.

Janet Yellen co-opts Reaganomics phrase for new Davos speech

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen at a speech this week. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

The U.S. needs to focus on increasing its productive potential, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen will tell world leaders Friday, calling for what she terms "modern supply side economics."

Why it matters: She is co-opting a phrase traditionally used by political conservatives to describe low-tax and deregulatory policies — and framing the Biden administration's initiatives as the best path forward to achieve greater national prosperity.