13 injured in concert disorders in Almaty 01 сентября 2013, 02:21
Still frame from ©STV channel video
At least 13 people have been injured in mass riots at the parking lot of Prime Plaza trade and entertainment center (at the crossing of Sain and Raymbek streets) in Almaty, Kazakhstan, Tengrinews.kz reports. According to preliminary information, several police and civil cars were damaged. Around 2000 people gathered for the concert, the Interior Department of Almaty city reported. The police received a message about some mass fighting near the mall at 9:08 p.m. According to TV presenter Daniyar Batyrbayev, Kazakh pop singer Kairat Nurtas sang half of his song and left the stage without finishing it. The audience was outrage at this and turned to violence. The aggressors used stones and glass bottles. Police patrol, Interior Department's police, local police officers and even interior military forces were dispatched to the site. More police backup arrived 20 minutes later, it included special rapid reaction forces and Arlan special forces. The police cordoned the site off. Active participants of the disorders have been arrested. The police is working to identify the instigators of the riots, the Almaty Interior Department reported. Here is a video made shorty before the disorders started (by Aleksandr Vedyashev / Youtube): One of the organizers of the concert Aelita Khabibullina says that the riots are not related to the performance of Mr. Nurtas: "The concert if Kairat Nurtas at Prime Plaza has finished with a debacle. Two hours ago a violent crowd broke through to the stage. Kairat only had time to sing one song. [...] This was horrible. There were small children, elderly people and pregnant women in the audience ... the mod was pressing them all. The security could not hold them. They say that all the policemen were elsewhere back then. The ground floor of the mall was already damaged when we left. The mod was pulling out road sings in the street, uprooting billboards and overturning tents," Khabibullina wrote in Facebook. During live broadcast at Tengrinews TV Daniyar Batyrbayev said: "When the the entry of superstar Kairat Nurtas was announced the crowd broke through the first line of fencing, then second, then third, the people started rushing to the stage. When some of them started climbing on the stage the security service simple took the singer away." This spurred more violence. "First the mob started throwing plastic bottles, then they added in glass ones. Together with Aelita Khabibullina we climbed under the stage and waited there while police arrived and started dispersing the crowd," the presenter said.