Kazakhstan government has resigned following fuel price protests.  The announcement came hours after the government declared a two-week state of emergency following protests over surging fuel prices. Protesters had earlier demanded the government resign.

Citing Kazakh president’s office, Interfax says Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev accepted the government's resignation on Wednesday, after a fuel price increase in Kazakhstan triggered protests in which nearly 100 police were injured.

Earlier Wednesday, President Tokayev declared a state of emergency in Almaty and Mangystau region for the period until January 19.  

According to official documents, the state of emergency reportedly includes an 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. curfew, movement restrictions, and a ban on mass gatherings, according to official documents.

By president’s decree the duties of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Tajikistan are temporarily assigned to Alikhan Smailov (first deputy prime minister in the resigned government). 

Meanwhile, Reuters says that speaking to acting cabinet members, Tokayev ordered them and provincial governors to reinstate the liquefied natural gas (LPG) price controls and broaden them to gasoline, diesel and other "socially important" consumer goods.

He reportedly also ordered the government to develop a personal bankruptcy law and consider freezing utilities' prices and subsidizing rent payments for poor families.

Protest rally in western Kazakhstan; photo / TASS.

Recall, hundreds of people in the western Kazakh region of Mangystau protested for two days on January 2-3 against a sudden, dramatic hike in prices for LNG used in vehicles.

Smaller demonstrations were reportedly also held in several cities and towns elsewhere in Kazakhstan in support of the protesters, including in the capital, Nur-Sultan. 

The price per liter of LNG reportedly jumped to 120 tenge (28 U.S. cents) at gas stations in Mangystau at the start of this year, compared with a price of 50-60 tenge (12-14 cents) in 2021.