Sun, 05 Apr 2020

NUR-SULTAN -- A soldier in the Kazakh armed forces has been arrested after deserting with 30 AK-47 assault rifles, 27 Makarov pistols, and a large amount of ammunition.

Kazakhstan's Interior Ministry said on February 21 that 24-year-old Sergeant Abylai Balghynbaev, left his unit near the southern city of Shymkent taking the weapons with him on February 19.

The ministry said the deserter was detained by police and Committee for National Security personnel.

It was not immediately clear why the man, who is a professional soldier, stole the weapons and ammunition.

Separately, the Military Prosecutor-General's Office said that it had launched a probe into the disappearance of the weapons.

Copyright (c) 2018. RFE/RL, Inc. Republished with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036

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