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Kazakh Devaluation Leads To Bank Run

Clients line up at Kaspi Bank in Astana to withdraw their savings on February 18.
ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- Hundreds of clients of three major banks in Kazakhstan are waiting in long lines trying to withdraw their deposits following the abrupt devaluation of the national currency, the tenge.

RFE/RL correspondents in Almaty report that clients of the Kaspi Bank, Alyans Bank, and TsenrKredit Bank rushed to the banks' branches on February 18 to take out their savings.

The banks issued statements saying that all rumors about their possible collapse spread on social networks and text messages were false.

Last week, the Kazakh National Bank announced a 19 percent devaluation of the tenge, triggering public protests in Almaty.

The tenge devaluation has affected the prices of almost all commodities and services in a country that imports most of its goods and food products.
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