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Thread: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

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    Default Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?
    April 8, 2010

    Members of the besieged government of Kyrgyzstan suspect that Moscow precipitated the violent upheaval that has swept the former Soviet republic in Central Asia. Already scores of people have been killed and hundreds more wounded after troops opened fire on protesters, who in turn overpowered the police, stormed and looted government buildings and forced President Kurmanbek Bakiev to flee the country. On Wednesday, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin denied any involvement by his country in the turmoil after his Kyrgyz counterpart said that Putin gave the go-ahead to the revolt. But whether or not the Kremlin urged the Kyrgyz opposition to call its supporters into the streets, Moscow has a lot to gain and Washington a lot to lose from the bloody upheaval that has ensued.

    For several years, Kyrgyzstan has been stuck in a tug-of-war between the two Cold War enemies, frequently making the landlocked state the center of geopolitical strategizing. The Americans have been pushing to maintain their cherished military base in the north of Kyrgyzstan, without which U.S. supply lines to the nearby war in Afghanistan would be significantly hampered. Russia, meanwhile, has lobbied to kick the American military out of what it still sees as its sphere of influence in the territories of the former Soviet Union. (See pictures of the disorder in Kyrgyzstan.)

    The struggle came to a head in February of last year, when the Kyrgyz handed the U.S. military base an eviction notice just weeks after Russia provided the impoverished country with a $2 billion loan and $150 million in aid. Russia denied any link between the two events, but U.S. officials saw it differently. Washington soon reached a deal with Kyrgyz leaders to keep the base open - in exchange for a tripling of the yearly rental to $60 million, among other conditions.(See Kyrgyzstan's role in getting U.S. troops to Afghanistan.)

    In a March 5 interview with TIME, an Obama Administration senior official said it had been a close call for the U.S. "That we have the Manas base in Kyrgyzstan is a great achievement," he said. "Russia didn't want to allow us to have that. They put down $2 billion to get us out. But Obama had very frank discussions with [Russian President Dmitri] Medvedev. He said, If you believe we have a common enemy in Afghanistan, then this is going to help us fight that common enemy. Had we lost that, it would have been a major blow. It is a major hub for getting our soldiers in and out of there."

    Since then, Russian-Kyrgyz relations have deteriorated, a process that culminated in Wednesday's declaration by Kyrgyz Prime Minister Daniyar Usenov that one of the heads of the opposition had met with Putin before going forward with the revolt. Usenov told a press conference on Tuesday in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek that opposition leader Temir Sariyev claimed during an interrogation that he had received assurances from Putin of Russia's support for the opposition.

    Putin vehemently denied the allegation at a press conference in the Russian city of Smolensk on Wednesday, saying the events in Kyrgyzstan had caught him by surprise. He added, however, that Kyrgyz President Bakiev had made many mistakes since coming to power in what is known as the Tulip Revolution five years ago. "When President Bakiev came to power, he very harshly criticized the deposed President, [Askar] Akayev, for his family values, for the fact that his relatives had positions throughout the Kyrgyz economy. I have the impression that Mr. Bakiev has been stepping on the same rakes," he said, alluding to the fact that Bakiev appointed his family members, including his son, to top government posts. A Kremlin source told Russia's Interfax news agency on Wednesday that Bakiev "would not be welcome in Moscow."

    At the press conference in Bishkek, the Kyrgyz Prime Minister also said he had spoken on Tuesday with the Russian ambassador to Kyrgyzstan and urged him to rein in the negative coverage of Kyrgyzstan in the Russian press. Indeed, the shifting attitudes in Russia toward the Kyrgyz leadership were felt weeks ago, when several broadcasters and newspapers in Russia began airing scathing attacks against Bakiev's government. Among them, the state-run radio station Golos Rossii, or Voice of Russia, said the Kyrgyz government had "shown itself to be totally ineffective" in a report on March 24, apparently timed to the fifth anniversary of the Tulip Revolution.

    The leaders of the new revolution now unfolding in Kyrgyzstan are already claiming victory over the government, which has not yet officially resigned. Opposition leaders have taken over key government buildings, including the headquarters of the security forces and the national television station, which they were using on Wednesday to call more protesters into the streets, urging citizens to rally for "freedom or death." As of Wednesday night, the Kyrgyz Health Ministry had confirmed 40 deaths amid the violence, and gruesome images of bodies in the streets and badly beaten police officers filled the global airwaves.

    The U.S. State Department was quick to issue a statement saying its air base in Kyrgyzstan was "functioning normally." "We are continuing to monitor the circumstances. We continue to think the government remains in power," State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said in a statement on Wednesday. But that view is beginning to seem untenable: Bakiev has already fled the country, and the opposition says it is forming a new government. How amenable that government would be to the U.S. presence in Kyrgyzstan remains to be seen. What is certain is that the struggle for influence between Russia and the U.S. may again heat up in Central Asia.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    This didn't make any news I heard.

    Violent upheaval?

    Scores killed?

    Hundreds wounded?
    Libertatem Prius!


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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Bob Brown believes unrest may be linked to Russia

    Posted: Tuesday, April 13, 2010 2:00 am

    The Daily Inter Lake | 0 comments

    It has been almost 15 years since Bob Brown visited Kyrgyzstan, but he sees a possible common thread between the political climate in the 1990s and the country’s current unrest: Russia.

    When Brown, former Montana Senate President and Secretary of State, traveled to Kyrgyzstan, his trip stemmed from the U.S. government’s desire to form a relationship with the recently independent country.


    In the mid-’90s Kyrgyzstan hadn’t long been freed from Soviet control, and the U.S. government wanted to prevent Russia from regaining its dominance in Central Asia.

    “Our government thought it was a bad idea for those breakaway provinces to get back into” Russian control, said Brown, now a senior fellow at the University of Montana Maureen & Mike Mansfield Center.

    The National Guard already had a State Partnership Program in place to pair U.S. states with foreign countries to form sister-state relationships. Brown suspects Montana was chosen as Kyrgyzstan’s sister state because of similarities between the two.

    “We’re both isolated. We’re both mountainous. We have a lot in common geographically,” he said.

    The U.S. government wanted to send representatives from Montana to Kyrgyzstan to cement the new relationship but didn’t want the country to get the wrong idea, Brown said. Rather than just sending military personnel, the government wanted to send a civilian.

    “Our Pentagon didn’t want people in Kyrgyzstan to think the military ruled the roost in any of our states,” he said. “They thought if we just sent a two-star general ... it would give the wrong impression.”

    Then-Gov. Marc Racicot wasn’t able to go, nor was then-Lt. Gov. Judy Martz, Brown said. At the time Brown was president of the state Senate and next in line in the state’s leadership.

    “I said, ‘Heck yes. I’d like to go,’” he said.

    While he remembers formal ceremonies, mutton and toasts, Brown also recalls Kyrgyzstan’s desperate poverty.

    Manhole covers in the capital, Bishkek, were stolen and sold as scrap metal, leaving gaping holes in the streets because there was no money to replace them. Brown was reprimanded for handing out dollars from his wallet to young people in the street.

    “They gave me a stern lecture. You just don’t do that,” he said. “But what’s a dollar to me?”

    Although Kyrgyzstan at that time was considered one of the region’s more stable countries, there was still a sense of unrest, Brown said. A stabilizing force in the area has long been the Manas Air Base near Bishkek, which Brown called “an important military base” for the United States.

    The base is used both as the launch point for refueling flights over Afghanistan and as a troop transit point. Troop transit flights had been diverted for several days because of the Kyrgyz revolution, but the U.S. Embassy said Monday those flights have returned to normal operation and that the refueling flights are continuing.

    Brown suspects Russia has more than a passing interest in the upheaval because of interest in Manas.

    “I think the Russians are pretty enthusiastic about what is going on in Kyrgyzstan, and there is pretty good evidence they’re behind a lot of this stuff,” he said.

    He suspects that the Kyrgyz people “are not sophisticated enough” to operate the base and that Russia would jump at the chance to take control of Manas.

    “I’m not sure that the unrest in Kyrgyzstan is an entirely local thing,”

    Brown said. “I think it probably has been encouraged by the bad guys in the Muslim world [i.e. al-Qaida terrorists] and Russia.”

    The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Kyrgyzstan declares emergency in southern city

    11 Jun 2010 00:14:22 GMT

    Source: Reuters

    * Government declares state of emergency, curfew

    * Hundreds wounded in violence

    * Osh a volatile city in south of country

    * Power base of exiled former president

    (Adds interim government quotes, details, changes dateline)

    At least 46 killed in southern Kyrgyz ethnic riots

    By Hulkar Isamova

    OSH, Kyrgyzstan, June 11 (Reuters) - Kyrgyzstan declared a state of emergency in the southern city of Osh on Friday and sent in armoured vehicles after hundreds of youths smashed windows, looted shops and set fire to cars.

    Southern Kyrgyzstan was the power base of Kurmanbek Bakiyev, deposed in April as president of the impoverished Central Asian country in a revolt that raised concern among regional players Russia, China and the United States.

    On May 13 his supporters briefly seized government buildings in the south, defying central authorities in Bishkek.

    Kyrgyzstan's interim government, led by Roza Otunbayeva, declared the state of emergency in Osh and three surrounding regions after holding an emergency meeting in the early hours of Friday, a spokesman for the government said.

    "Roza Otunbayeva announced that the interim government will deploy all of its available resources and is sure that security will be provided for its citizens," the spokesman, Farid Niyazov, said by telephone.

    Niyazov said between 1,000 and 3,000 people had been involved in the violence, fighting with steel bars and their bare hands in the streets.

    "More than 500 people have arrived in hospital overnight with knife wounds. It's possible that one person has been killed," a doctor at a hospital in Osh told Reuters on condition of anonymity. Niyazov said no deaths had been reported.

    The crowds dispersed after troops and armoured vehicles were sent into the city, Niyazov said. He said the state of emergency would remain in force until June 20 and that the interim government had imposed a night-time curfew.

    Kyrgyzstan, which won independence with the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, hosts both a Russian and a U.S. military base.

    Political tensions between the agricultural south and the north of Kyrgyzstan exist alongside ethnic and clan rivalries. Osh lies in a particularly volatile part of Kyrgyzstan. A city of more than 200,000, it is located in the fertile Fergana Valley, where Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan meet.

    In 1990, shortly before the collapse of the Soviet Union, hundreds of people were killed in ethnic clashes betweek Uzbeks and Kyrgyz near Osh.

    (Additional reporrting by Olga Dzyubenko in Bishkek, writing by Robin Paxton in Almaty)

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    World
    Kyrgyzstan wants Russian help to stop riots

    Saturday, 12 June 2010 09:44
    Kyrgyzstan's interim government has appealed to Russia to send peacekeeping troops to restore order after at least 50 people were killed in ethnic riots in the south of the country.

    Interim government leader Roza Otunbayeva said: 'We need the entry of outside armed forces to calm the situation down.

    'We have appealed to Russia for help and I have already signed such a letter for President Dmitry Medvedev.'

    The government has also appealed to retired police and army officers to travel to the southern city of Osh to prevent the clashes escalating into civil war.

    'The provisional Kyrgyz government calls on retired police and military officers to contribute to the stabilisation of the situation in Osh,' said government spokesman Azimbek Beknazarov.

    'The authorities will be grateful for any volunteers who are ready to help prevent civil war in the south of Kyrgyzstan,' he added.

    Mr Beknazarov was speaking from the region where clashes between ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbeks broke out on Thursday.

    The appeal comes as the health ministry issued an updated death toll from the violence, saying at least 50 people have been killed and 650 injured in the clashes.

    The previous death toll had stood at 45.

    Mr Beknazarov said the situation there remains 'very difficult' despite the state of emergency declared by the government and a curfew on Osh and neighbouring districts.

    'Exchanges of fire are continuing and you can hear them everywhere, several buildings are in flames, people are frightened,' he said.

    Police officers and soldiers deployed to the troubled zone are exhausted, falling asleep on the roads they were meant to be watching, he added.

    'We won't have enough people on the ground to ensure security over the next two days, if we don't get more help,' he warned.

    The violence, thought to have been set off by a fight between youths from the different ethnic groups on Thursday, quickly escalated into street battles in which people fought using improvised weapons but also firearms.

    It comes some two weeks before a referendum on the constitution, which is scheduled for 27 June.

    Since last April's uprising, which ousted President Kurmanbek Bakiyev and left 87 people dead, foreign leaders have warned of the danger of civil war.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Kyrgyz leader asking for Russian peacekeepers to help quell violence
    CNN ^
    | 6/12/2010

    The Kyrgyz interim leader has asked for Russian peacekeepers to help stop ethnic violence in the south of the country, a government spokesman confirmed on Saturday.


    Kyrgyz interim government's press officer Farid Niyazov said the country's leader, Roza Otunbayeva, announced that an official request for the assistance be sent to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev.


    (Excerpt) Read more at edition.cnn.com ...

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Hide and watch...

    No Russian troops to be sent to quell Kyrgyzstan riots

    Nation in chaos; Russia turns down plea for immediate military help

    Ethnic rioting leaves scores dead, more than 1,000 wounded

    D. Dalton Bennett / AP
    Ethnic Uzbeks gather near the Kyrgyz-Uzbek border in southern Kyrgyzstan on Saturday. Thousands fled to the border in panic as ethnic violence rose to the nation's highest level since the former president was toppled in April.
    View related photos
    Vide



    updated 6:49 p.m. CT, Sat., June 12, 2010

    OSH, Kyrgyzstan - Kyrgyzstan asked Russia for military help Saturday to quell ethnic rioting in the central Asian nation, but the Kremlin refused to immediately send troops and offered only humanitarian assistance. Nearly 70 people were reported killed and 945 wounded in the violence.

    Interim President Roza Otunbayeva acknowledged that her government has lost control over the south as its main city of Osh, the country's second largest, slid further into chaos and thousands of minority Uzbeks fled to the border. Her government sent troops and armor into the city of 250,000, but they have failed to stop the rampage.

    Otunbayeva asked Russia early Saturday to send in troops, but the Kremlin responded that it wouldn't meddle into what it described as Kyrgyzstan's internal conflict.

    "It's a domestic conflict, and Russia now doesn't see conditions for taking part in its settlement," Kremlin spokeswoman Natalya Timakova said in Moscow without elaborating. She added in a statement that Russia will consult other members of a security pact of ex-Soviet nations on the possibility of sending a joint peacekeeping force to Kyrgyzstan.

    Timakova said the government would send a plane to Kyrgyzstan to deliver humanitarian supplies and help evacuate the victims of the violence.

    Kyrgyzstan hosts both U.S. and Russian military air bases, but they are in the north. Russia has about 500 troops there, mostly air force personnel, and would have to airlift more if it decides to help. The United States has the Manas air base in the capital, Bishkek, that is a crucial supply hub for the coalition fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan, but it was not known if interim government had asked for any U.S. military help.

    Much of central Osh was on fire Saturday, and the sky was black with smoke. Gangs of young Kyrgyz men armed with firearms and metal bars marched on minority Uzbek neighborhoods and set homes on fire. Stores were looted and the city was running out of food.

    'We need outside forces'

    Thousands of terrified ethnic Uzbeks were rushing toward the nearby border with Uzbekistan. An Associated Press reporter there saw the bodies of children killed in the panicky stampede.

    "The situation in the Osh region has spun out of control," Otunbayeva told reporters. "Attempts to establish a dialogue have failed, and fighting and rampages are continuing. We need outside forces to quell confrontation."

    The unrest is the worst violence since former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev was toppled in a bloody uprising in April and fled the country. It comes as a crucial test of the interim government's ability to control the country, hold a June 27 vote on a new constitution and go ahead with new parliamentary elections scheduled for October.

    Otunbayeva on Saturday blamed Bakiyev's family for instigating the unrest in Osh, saying they aimed to derail the constitutional referendum.

    Ethnic tensions have long simmered in the Ferghana Valley, split by whimsically carved borders among Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan that were drawn up on Soviet dictator Josef Stalin's orders. In 1990, hundreds of people were killed in a violent land dispute between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in Osh, and only the quick deployment of Soviet troops quelled the fighting.

    The official toll rose Saturday to at least 69 people dead and 945 wounded, the Health Ministry said. The real figures may be much higher because doctors and human rights workers said ethnic Uzbeks were too afraid to seek hospital treatment.

    State of emergency declared

    At a hospital in the Nariman district, near Osh airport, an AP photographer saw the bodies of 10 people killed in fighting, and a health worker said a pregnant woman also died after being unsuccessfully treated for gunshot wounds.

    In mainly Uzbek areas on the edge of Osh, residents painted the letters "SOS" on the road in a futile bid for help.

    Otunbayeva said there were food shortages in Osh after virtually all stores were looted or shut. A state of emergency was declared around Osh and the government sent armored vehicles, troops and helicopters to pacify fighting that erupted late Thursday. Fighting quieted down Friday night but resumed with new strength Saturday.

    "Young men in white masks are marauding and stealing from the remaining stores, offices and houses, and then setting them on fire," said Bakyt Omorkulov, a member of the Coalition for Democracy and Civil Society, a non-governmental organization.

    Omorkulov said ethnic Uzbeks called to say their houses were on fire and they were terrified. "They called us and were sobbing into the phone, but what can we do?" Omorkulov said.

    From the Osh airport, where hundreds of arriving passengers were stranded, fire from heavy machine guns and automatic weapons was heard as troops tried to gain control of roads into the city.

    Omurbek Suvanaliyev, a leader of the Ata-Zhurt political party that tried to organize local militia, said the warring parties even used armored vehicles in fighting.

    "It's a real war," he said. "Everything is burning, and bodies are lying on the streets."

    Police and residents said young Kyrgyz men with metal bars and guns were streaming into Osh by road from other parts of the country and marching toward Uzbek neighborhoods.

    At one border crossing, a crowd of refugees, mostly women and children, fashioned improvised flimsy bridges out of planks and ladders to traverse the ditches marking the border.

    Additional reinforcements were arriving at the Osh airport, including 100 elite police officers from Bishkek. "Our task is to restore the constitutional order," said the group's leader Nur Mambetaliyev.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Kyrgyzstan rules troops can shoot to kill

    Saturday, 12 June 2010

    Kyrgyzstan's interim government has ruled its security forces can shoot to kill in a bid to quell ethnic clashes which have killed at least 77 in southern regions of Osh and Jalalabad and injured over 1,000.

    The ruling is valid in the regions where a state of emergency has been declared, to defend civilians as well as in self-defence, and in case of mass or armed attacks, the decree, agreed at a late-night meeting, said.

    The ruling is valid from the moment of signing until the state of emergency is revoked, it said.

    Earlier, the interim government appealed to Russia to send peacekeeping troops to restore order after at least 50 people were killed in ethnic riots in the south of the country.

    Interim government leader Roza Otunbayeva said: 'We need the entry of outside armed forces to calm the situation down.

    'We have appealed to Russia for help and I have already signed such a letter for President Dmitry Medvedev.'

    The Russian government's press service said Prime Minister Vladimir Putin and Ms Otunbayeva discussed the situation in a telephone call, without giving any further details.

    The government has also appealed to retired police and army officers to travel to the southern city of Osh to prevent the clashes escalating into civil war.

    'The provisional Kyrgyz government calls on retired police and military officers to contribute to the stabilisation of the situation in Osh,' said government spokesman Azimbek Beknazarov.

    'The authorities will be grateful for any volunteers who are ready to help prevent civil war in the south of Kyrgyzstan,' he added.

    Mr Beknazarov was speaking from the region where clashes between ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbeks broke out on Thursday.

    The appeals come as the health ministry issued an updated death toll from the violence, saying at least 50 people have been killed and 650 injured in the clashes.

    The previous death toll had stood at 45.

    Mr Beknazarov said the situation there remains 'very difficult' despite the state of emergency declared by the government and a curfew on Osh and neighbouring districts.

    'Exchanges of fire are continuing and you can hear them everywhere, several buildings are in flames, people are frightened,' he said.

    Police officers and soldiers deployed to the troubled zone are exhausted, falling asleep on the roads they were meant to be watching, he added.

    'We won't have enough people on the ground to ensure security over the next two days, if we don't get more help,' he warned.

    The violence, thought to have been set off by a fight between youths from the different ethnic groups on Thursday, quickly escalated into street battles in which people fought using improvised weapons and firearms.

    It comes two weeks before a referendum on the constitution, which is scheduled for 27 June.

    Since last April's uprising, which ousted President Kurmanbek Bakiyev and left 87 people dead, foreign leaders have warned of the danger of civil war.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Russian paratroopers sent into volatile Kyrgyzstan

    Sunday, June 13, 2010
    Reads: 156 | Comments: 0 | 6284



    Interfax are reporting that Russia has sent hundreds of paratroopers into Kyrgyzstan on Sunday in an effort to protect its military facilities.

    This following reports that ethnic clashes are spreading in the strategic Central Asian state. The death toll has now passed 100 despite the interim government extending the state of emergency in the country's south.

    Al Jazeerah confirm that police and soldiers have also been authorised to "shoot-to-kill" to defend civilians and in self-defence. The measure has however not stopped the spiralling violence between ethnic Uzbeks and Kyrgyz.

    According to Reuters ethnic Uzbeks in a besieged neighborhood of Kyrgyzstan's second city Osh said gangs, aided by the military, were carrying out genocide, burning residents out of their homes and shooting them as they fled. Witnesses saw bodies lying on the streets.

    Former president Kurmanbek Bakiyev, exiled in Kazakhstan, appealed for Russian help to quell the riots in the south saying that Kyrgyzstan was on the verge of collapse.

    Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said he believed 15 Pakistani citizens had been taken hostage and one killed in Osh. About 1,200 Pakistanis, mostly students, live in Kyrgyzstan, though many have returned home for summer holidays.

    Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan intertwine in the Fergana Valley. While Uzbeks make up 14.5 percent of the Kyrgyz population, the two groups are roughly equal in the Osh and Jalalabad regions.

    The latest clashes are the worst ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan since 1990.

    Russia has said it will not send in peacekeepers alone but would discuss the situation on Monday at a meeting of the Collective Security Treaty Organization.

    The BBC report that over 30 000 ethnic Uzbeks have fled the country.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    75,000 Uzbeks flee ethnic riots in Kyrgyzstan

    By SASHA MERKUSHEV and YURAS KARMANAU (AP) – 1 day ago

    OSH, Kyrgyzstan — Kyrgyz mobs burned Uzbek homes and cafes and slaughtered Uzbek villagers Sunday in the worst ethnic rioting this Central Asian nation has seen in 20 years. More than 75,000 Uzbeks fled across the border into Uzbekistan, trying to dodge bullets in a frantic dash to safety.

    Triumphant crowds of Kyrgyz men took control of Osh, the second-largest city in Kyrgyzstan, on Sunday as the few Uzbeks still left barricaded themselves in their neighborhoods. Fires set by rioters raged across the city of 250,000, and food was scarce after widespread looting. Police or military troops were nowhere to be seen.

    The rioting that begin Thursday night appeared aimed at undermining Kyrgyzstan's interim government, which came to power after former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev was ousted in a bloody uprising in April and fled the country. Uzbeks have backed the interim government, while many Kyrgyz in the south have support the toppled president.

    The United States, Russia, and the U.N. chief all expressed alarm about the scale of the violence and discussed how to help the refugees. Russia sent in an extra battalion to protect its air base in the northern part of the country.

    Most of the Uzbek refugees at the border were elderly people, women and children, with the men having remained behind to defend their property. Many arrived with gunshot wounds, the Uzbekistan Emergencies Ministry said, according to Russian media.

    "We saw lots of dead. I saw one guy die after being shot in the chest," said Ziyeda Akhmedova, an Uzbek women in her late 20s at one of several camps hastily set up in Uzbekistan along the border.

    Interim President Roza Otunbayeva blamed Bakiyev's family for instigating the unrest, saying it aimed to derail a June 27 constitutional referendum and new elections scheduled for October. "Bakiyev's entourage has funded and organized these riots," Otunbayeva's deputy Omurbek Tekebayev told The Associated Press.

    From his self-imposed exile in Belarus, Bakiyev denied any role in the violence and blamed interim authorities for failing to protect the people.

    The interim government ordered troops to shoot rioters dead, but even that failed to stop the spiraling violence that has left more than 100 people dead and over 1,250 wounded. Doctors say the true toll may be much higher because wounded minority Uzbeks are too afraid of being attacked again to go to hospitals.

    The rampages spread quickly Sunday to Jalal-Abad, another major southern city 45 miles (70 kilometers) from Osh, and its neighboring villages, as mobs methodically set Uzbek houses, stores and cafes on fire. The rioters seized an armored vehicle and automatic weapons at a local military unit and attacked police stations around the region trying to get more firearms.

    Police and the military appeared to be on the defensive across the south, avoiding clashes with mobs. Flights to both Osh and Jalal-Abad were canceled and the airports were closed.

    Kyrgyzstan hosts both U.S. and Russian military air bases, but they are in the north, away from the rioting. Russia refused Kyrgyzstan's request for military help to quell the rioting, but confirmed it sent extra reinforcements Sunday to protect its base.

    The U.S. Manas air base in the capital, Bishkek, is a crucial supply hub for the coalition fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan. Manas was working with the U.S. State Department and interim government to help deliver food and medical supplies to the refugees, said Air Force Maj. John A. Elolf, a spokesman at the base.

    A Pentagon spokesman said the interim government had not asked for any U.S. military help.

    Uzbekistan's Foreign Ministry condemned the riots and voiced hope that Kyrgyzstan will re-establish order, but the country's authoritarian President Islam Karimov is unlikely to interfere in the conflict.

    In Jalal-Abad on Sunday, thousands of Kyrgyz men brandishing sticks, metals bars and hunting rifles marched together to burn Uzbek property while frightened police stayed away. Uzbeks felled trees on the city's main street, trying to block their advance.

    Kyrgyz mobs tried to storm the city's hospital, but Uzbeks drove them off after a fierce gunbattle that raged for hours, witnesses said. Mobs also surrounded a local prison, trying to free its inmates and attempted repeatedly to capture the Jalal-Abad police headquarters, but were repelled.

    Kyrgyz mobs killed about 30 Uzbeks Sunday in the village of Suzak near Jalal-Abad, Talaaibek Myrzabayev, the chief military conscription officer in Bishkek, told the AP. Another Uzbek village, Dostuk, was burned by Kyrgyz assailants, but it was not known how many people were killed, he said.

    Ethnic Uzbeks ambushed about 100 Kyrgyz men Sunday on a road near Jalal-Abad and took them hostage, he said. Vehicles on the main highway near Jalal-Abad repeatedly came under fire from unidentified gunmen. Later in the day, troops were seen shooting at the gunmen.

    In the nearby village of Bazar-Kurgan, 400 Uzbeks overturned cars and killed a police captain, local resident Asyl Tekebayev said. Residents said armed Kyrgyz men were flooding into the village to retaliate.

    The fertile Ferghana Valley where Osh and Jalal-Abad are located once belonged to a single feudal lord, but it was split by Soviet dictator Josef Stalin among Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. The Stalinist borders rekindled old rivalries and fomented ethnic tensions.

    Both ethnic groups are predominantly Sunni Muslim. Uzbeks are generally better off economically, but they have few representatives in power and have pushed for broader political and cultural rights. While Uzbeks make up only about 15 percent of the overall population, they rival Kyrgyz in numbers in the Osh and Jalal-Abad regions.

    In 1990, hundreds were killed in a violent land dispute between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in Osh, and only the quick deployment of Soviet troops quelled the fighting. With no Russian troops in sight, the interim government announced a partial mobilization of military reservists up to 50 years old.

    "No one is rushing to help us, so we need to establish order ourselves," said Talaaibek Adibayev, a 39-year-old army veteran who showed up at Bishkek's military conscription office.

    The official casualty toll Sunday rose to at least 104 people killed and 1,231 wounded, the Health Ministry said. The ministry said this included 21 dead in the main hospital in Jalal-Abad but not hospitals elsewhere in the region.

    Maksat Zheinbekov, the acting mayor of Jalal-Abad, told the AP that Bakiyev's supporters had triggered the riots by attacking both Uzbeks and Kyrgyz.

    Kyrgyz residents interviewed by AP Television News in Osh blamed Uzbeks for starting the rioting by attacking students and Kyrgyz women. Ethnic Kyrgyz from neighboring villages then streamed into the city to strike back, they said.

    "Why have the Uzbeks become so brazen?" said one Osh resident, who gave only her first name, Aigulia, because she feared for her safety. "Why do they burn my house?"

    Aigulia said her house was destroyed by Uzbeks overnight and all her Kyrgyz neighbors had to run for their safety. She said the area was still unsafe, claiming Uzbek snipers were shooting at them.

    A Kyrgyz man, Iskander, said he and others burned Uzbek property to avenge their attacks.

    "Whatever you see over there — all the burnt restaurants and cafes — were owned by them and we destroyed them on purpose," he told the AP. "Why didn't they want to live in peace?"

    Yuras Karmanau reported from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Associated Press Writers Leila Saralayeva in Bishkek and Sid Yanyshev in Namangan, Uzbekistan, also contributed to this report.

    Copyright © 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Kyrgyzstan violence: British and US governments prepare evacuation of citizens


    Ethnic Uzbek gather near the Kyrgyz-Uzbek border in southern Kyrgyzstan trying to seek refuge in Uzbekistan from mobs of Kyrgyz men attacking the minority Uzbek community Photo: AP


    The British and US governments are preparing an emergency evacuation of international citizens from southern Kyrgyzstan, as brutal ethnic violence raged unabated for a third day in the Central Asian republic.

    By Richard Orange in Almaty
    Published: 4:04PM BST 13 Jun 2010

    British ambassador to Kazakhstan David Moran flew to the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek to help plan the rescue, which is targeting those prevented by blockades from reaching the airport for a flight from Osh to Bishkek chartered by the US consulate on Saturday. There are around 25 Americans and a handful of British people in the country.

    "There is a coordinated operation under way. The foreign offices are coordinating in order to try to get them out," said Kim McDonald, a spokesman for the US embassy in Bishkek.

    More than 100 people have now died and more than 1,000 been injured in what some eyewitnesses describe an ongoing pogrom against ethnic Uzbeks, although there are fears the death toll is closer to 1,000.

    More than 75,000 Uzbek refugees have now fled the violence and crossed the border into Uzbekistan.

    Kyrgyzstan's interim President Roza Otunbayeva gave shoot-to-kill instructions to police and other security forces in response to the riots.

    "If we do not take opportune and effective measures the unrest could become much more serious and descend into a regional conflict," the government said in its decree.

    Russia, the first country to recognise Mrs Otunbayeva's government in April, on Sunday sent a battalion of paratroopers, about 300, to reinforce security at its own airbase near Kant in the north of the country.

    The US military will be watching carefully how Russia, which has long disliked having the US Manas airbase in the former soviet Republic, reacts to the ongoing crisis. Earlier this year, there were fears that Mrs Otunbayeva would cancel the lease to Manas under Russian pressure, but she instead extended it for a year.

    Kyrgyz mobs burned Uzbek villages, slaughtered their residents and stormed police stations seeking to loot more weapons throughout Sunday, as the violence spread from the country's second city of Osh to Jalalabad and its surrounding villages.

    Thousands of Kyrgyz men brandishing sticks, metals bars and hunting rifles gathered at Jalalabad's horse racing track and marched to burn Uzbek property while frightened police stayed away.

    Uzbeks in Osh and Jalalabad are accusing the government police and militia forces of aiding the Kyrgyz side.

    Shohruh Saipov, an Uzbek barricaded into his neighbourhood in central Osh said: "There are going to be no Uzbek there inside those militia. They are all going to be Kyrgyz with weapons. Why would they help us, if they are killing us now?"

    Uzbek community groups say that official figures grossly underestimate the true level of deaths and injury, because Uzbeks are too scared to bring their dead and wounded to hospitals and morgues. One Uzbek community group in Osh estimated yesterday that more than 1000 people had been killed in the violence.

    Roughly half of Osh's population is Uzbek and tensions have been high for the last two decades, after hundreds of people were killed in ethnic clashes between Uzbeks and Kyrgyz in 1990.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Uzbeks are the Russian Orthodox Christians and the Kyrgyzstanis are SUNNI MUSLIMS

    From The Times
    June 14, 2010
    Russia sends in troops as slaughter leaves Kyrgyzstan on the brink of collapse

    Tony Halpin, Moscow

    Russia flew troops to Kyrgyzstan last night to reinforce security at its military base near Bishkek as ethnic slaughter spread across the south of the country and tens of thousands of refugees poured into neighbouring Uzbekistan.

    As the Kyrgyz authorities ordered police and soldiers to shoot to kill rioters, in an effort to end the country’s worst ethnic violence in 20 years, Moscow sent as many as 650 paratroopers “to ensure the security of Russian servicemen and their families”.

    The Kremlin has, so far, rejected an appeal by Kyrgyzstan’s interim Government to send troops to the southern regions of Osh and Jalalabad, where more than 100 people have died and up to 1,400 have been wounded in three days of clashes between Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbek groups. However, the size of the protection force fuelled speculation that a meeting later today of a Nato-style security alliance for former Soviet states could authorise a Russian-led peacekeeping mission to intervene and head off a possible civil war. The Collective Security Treaty Organisation includes Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan, which announced yesterday that more than 75,000 refugees had crossed its border to escape the violence.

    Uzbekistan said that it had set up temporary camps for them in border villages. The Red Cross warned of a humanitarian crisis that was “getting worse by the hour”.

    Related Links

    * 'More than 100 dead' in Kyrgyzstan violence

    * Power play, poverty and ethnic hatreds

    Much of Osh, a city of 250,000, has been destroyed by fire and looting after Kyrgyz gangs ransacked Uzbek neighbourhoods. Witnesses reported that women and children were shot as they tried to flee and that bodies littered the city’s streets and many of its destroyed buildings. “They are killing Uzbeks like animals. Almost the whole city is in flames,” said Dilmurad Ishanov, an Uzbek human rights worker in Osh.

    In nearby Jalalabad, thousands of Kyrgyz men armed with guns and metal bars tried to burn property in Uzbek districts. An attempt to storm the city’s hospital was repelled after a gun, battle, and the police headquarters came under repeated attack.

    Mobs killed at least 30 Uzbeks in the village of Suzak and set fire to the village of Dostuk, while at least a hundred Kyrgyz men were reportedly taken hostage by ethnic Uzbeks outside Jalalabad.

    Pakistan’s Foreign Minister, Shah Mehmood Qureshi, said that 15 Pakistani students had reportedly been taken hostage in Osh and one had been killed.

    The violence is the greatest challenge faced by the interim Government since it took over from Kurmanbek Bakiyev, ousted after a popular uprising in April that left 87 dead and hundreds wounded in Bishkek.

    The interim President, Roza Otunbayeva, accused Mr Bakiyev’s family of stirring up the violence in Osh, his southern stronghold, in an attempt to wreck a referendum on a new constitution scheduled for June 27. Mr Bakiyev, in exile in Belarus, called the allegations “shameless lies” and warned that Kyrgyzstan was close to collapse. “The Kyrgyz republic is on the verge of losing its statehood. People are dying and no one from the current authorities is in a position to protect them,” he said in a statement.

    Ms Otunbayeva issued a decree authorising lethal force against rioters to protect life and property, imposed a 24-hour curfew in the Osh region, and extended a state of emergency across southern Kyrgyzstan.

    The Government dispatched five aircraft carrying soldiers from Bishkek to try to restore order in Jalalabad and announced a call-up of army reservists aged 18 to 50. Ethnic Uzbeks in Osh accused the military of helping Kyrgyz gangs to commit “genocide”, burning families out of their homes and shooting people as they fled. A former parliamentary deputy, Alisher Sabirov, said: “Residents are calling us and saying soldiers are firing at them. There’s an order to shoot the marauders — but they aren’t shooting them.”

    A spokesman for the US Embassy called for an “immediate restoration of order”. The US runs an airbase outside Bishkek that is vital in supplying Nato operations in Afghanistan.

    The violence is the worst since hundreds of people were killed after a land dispute between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in Osh in 1990. Soviet troops intervened on that occasion to stop the fighting.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Here it comes...

    Russians pressing Kyrgyzstan to oust U.S. base

    By Bill Gertz

    7:19 p.m., Sunday, June 13, 2010
    Comments


    An Uzbek's home burns after being torched by Kyrgyz men in Jalal-Abad, Kyrgyzstan, on Sunday. Thousands of Kyrgyz men brandishing sticks, metal bars and hunting rifles burned Uzbeks' property in the Central Asian nation as frightened police stayed away. (Associated Press)

    The strategic U.S. air base at Manas, Kyrgyzstan, is once again facing closure as Russia works behind the scenes to influence Kyrgyzstan's interim government, which faced new violence in ethnic clashes over the weekend.

    In Osh, Kyrgyzstan, on Sunday, Kyrgyz mobs burned ethnic-Uzbeks' homes and cafes and slaughtered Uzbek villagers in the worst ethnic rioting in the Central Asian nation in 20 years. More than 75,000 Uzbeks were forced to flee into neighboring Uzbekistan as they dodged bullets in the violence, the Associated Press reported from Osh.

    Regarding Manas, a Pentagon official saidthat the Kyrgyz interim government requested in late May that subcontractors who supply fuel to the Manas Transit Center pay a 12 percent value added tax (VAT) on fuel shipments.

    "Under the U.S.-Kyrgyzstan cooperation agreement, all Defense Department supplies are exempt from any form of taxation in Kyrgyzstan, to include a VAT tax," the official said.

    The tax dispute led to a disruption of fuel supplies, including in shipments to Afghanistan.

    Then on June 6, the Kyrgyz government suspended its requests for VAT tax payments, and fuel shipments resumed "in a manner consistent with the terms agreed to by the U.S. and Kyrgyz governments in our cooperation agreement," the official said.

    The resumption of fuel supplies averted a showdown, but the Obama administration has no plan for how to continue Manas operations after June 20, when the tax will again be sought on shipments.

    However, a former U.S. official familiar with events in Kyrgyzstan told The Washington Times that the Russian government, which views Kyrgyzstan as part of its sphere of influence, is pressuring Kyrgyz officials to eventually close the U.S. base.

    According to the official, Vladimir Rushailo, a special envoy to Kyrgyzstan for Russian President Dmitri Medvedev, has been in the country to lobby the government in Bishkek.

    "The interim Kyrgyz government showed it can disrupt U.S. government military operations in an effort to obtain more money, in flagrant violation of existing bilateral agreements," the former official said.

    Last year, Kyrgyzstan threatened to close Manas after Moscow offered more than $2 billion in aid and loans. However, Kyrgyzstan agreed to keep open the base after the U.S. government tripled its rent on the base.

    The former official said the Kyrgyz government wants money and is being manipulated by Moscow into supporting Russia's geopolitical interests.

    "The balance of power in Central Asia is about to shift further against U.S. interests," the former official said.

    Yevgeni Khorishko, a spokesman with the Russian Embassy in Washington, could not be reached for comment.

    Vladimir Putin, Russia's prime minister and de-facto leader, said in Istanbul on June 8 that it was up to the Bishkek government to decide whether the base should stay open or not.

    The Manas base, the only U.S. military base in the Central Asian republics of the former Soviet Union, has been in operation since 2002 and is a major fuel-supply station, handling as much as 12 million gallons of fuel per month. The base is a hub for KC-135 refueling tankers and also a major stopover for thousands of U.S. troops heading to Afghanistan. In addition to refueling operations and troop transport, the base is used for medical evacuations.

    In April, the House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee on national security and foreign affairs held a hearing on the Manas base and the refueling operations in what critics say could ultimately undermining Pentagon efforts to use the base for refueling and troop-transfer operations.

    Rioting in Kyrgyzstan began Thursday and appeared focused on destabilizing the interim government, which came to power after former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev was ousted in a bloody uprising in April and fled the country. Uzbeks have backed the interim government, while many Kyrgyz in the south support the toppled president.

    • This article is based in part on wire service reports.

    © Copyright 2010 The Washington Times, LLC.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Kygyzstan's list of Natural Resources


    * EUROPE NEWS
    * JUNE 14, 2010
    Kyrgyzstan Violence Threatens Region

    Government seeks Russian help; many refugees go to Uzbekistan

    By KADYR TOKTOGULOV And ALAN CULLISON

    BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan—Ethnic violence flared out of control in this strategically important Central Asian country on Sunday, threatening to destabilize what has been a conduit for troops and supplies for the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan.

    Kyrgyzstan's government, for the first time since the country declared independence in 1991, appealed to Russia for help in restoring order. The Kremlin responded by saying it was sending 300 paratroopers—but only to protect its own military base near Bishkek, far from the fighting in the country's south. Russia otherwise appears wary of being drawn into the Kyrgyz conflict.

    Kyrgyzstan's own security forces have failed to contain a rising tide of ethnic violence in the south, where more than 100 people have been killed since fighting began Thursday night, according to the country's health ministry. The officials say the death toll could be considerably higher, as the current count includes only the dead at hospitals and morgues.

    Around 75,000 people have now fled fighting into neighboring Uzbekistan, Russia's official news agency said, citing the Uzbek government.

    Ethnic clashes—mainly of Kyrgyz attacking Uzbek minorities—spread Sunday through Kyrgyzstan's second-largest province, Jalal-Abad, government officials said. Crowds were setting fire to Uzbek homes and businesses, according to local news reports.

    The ferocity of the fighting heightens fears of wider havoc in Central Asia, whose hitherto peaceful former Soviet republics have been a base for resupply of the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan. The State Department Sunday called for a quick restoration of peace and order, and endorsed efforts by the United Nations and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to find a solution.

    For nine years the U.S. has maintained an air base in Kyrgyzstan, known for its picturesque mountains and high meadows. Lately the country been the scene of civil strife: In April mobs toppled its autocratic president after protests over his alleged corruption and utility rate hikes. Now ethnic strife has sprung up in the vacuum left behind.

    Leaders in Bishkek's interim government have blamed the ousted president, Kurmanbek Bakiyev, for inciting unrest in the south in an effort to regain power. Mr. Bakiyev issued a denial Sunday, saying that Kyrgyzstan "is on the verge of losing its statehood."

    "Instead of mobilizing all the resources to contain this conflict, the government is giving interviews and lying about me and my relatives," he said, according to the Interfax news agency.

    The brunt of the violence has been borne by ethnic Uzbeks, who are a sizeable minority in Kyrgyzstan, mainly concentrated in the country's south. Uzbek officials say that thousands of Uzbeks, many of them women and children, have fled over the Kyrgyz border into neighboring Uzbekistan, after ethnic Kyrgyz began burning Uzbek homes and looting shops in the southern Kyrgyz city of Osh. Uzbekistan's Emergencies Ministry said it was setting up refugee camps for the victims in border areas, according to Russia's RIA Novosti news agency.

    Ethnic tensions have simmered between Kyrgyzstan's ethnic communities since the collapse of the Soviet Union, but have seldom broken above the surface. They stretch back to 1990, when rising ethnic nationalism and worsening economic conditions before the breakup of the Soviet Union let to a deadly conflict in which hundreds were killed before it was eventually put to a stop when Soviet troops intervened.

    The Kyrgyz government dispatched troops to the city over the weekend, but that has done little to stop the fighting. On Sunday Kyrgyz officials declared a state of emergency throughout Jalal-Abad province, which borders on Uzbekistan.

    Ethnic Kyrgyz mobs killed about 30 Uzbeks Sunday in the village of Suzak in the Jalal-Abad region, the Associated Press reported, citing Taalaibek Myrzabayev, the chief military conscription officer in Bishkek. Another ethnic Uzbek village, Dostuk, was burned by Kyrgyz assailants, but the casualties there were not known, the AP reported. Ethnic Uzbeks also ambushed about 100 ethnic Kyrgyz men Sunday near Jalal-Abad and took them hostage, he said, according to the AP. Vehicles on the main highway near Jalal-Abad repeatedly came under fire from unidentified gunmen.

    Witnesses in Osh said Sunday that fires set by rioters have destroyed swaths of the city, and that crowds of triumphant Kyrgyz men roamed the street while remaining Uzbeks barricaded themselves in their neighborhoods, arming themselves with sticks and knives. Gunfire was audible in the city, and security forces were unable or unwilling to restore order.

    Kyrgyzstan's government has appealed for Russian help in stopping the latest fighting, but so far the Kremlin has waffled. Russia on Sunday sent a battalion of paratroopers—about 300 people—to reinforce security at its air base in near Bishkek, and on Saturday said it would discuss the possibility of sending troops with members of the Collective Security Treaty Organization—a group of former Soviet states that includes Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. But those consultations appeared to be a delay tactic while Moscow mulls over whether to commit forces.

    Russia has been jealous of the U.S. presence in Kyrgyzstan, which it considers to be part of its traditional sphere of influence, and has over the years lobbied the government to push the U.S. off its military base near Bishkek. But the Kremlin is nevertheless wary about any open-ended peacekeeping role in the region, said Ivan Safranchuk, a Moscow-based analyst and expert on Central Asia at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations.

    Related

    * For U.S. and Russia, Kyrgyz Crisis Poses Strategic Risk
    * Ethnic Clashes Rekindle Kyrgyz Strife
    * Germany Probes Russian Shipments to Iran



    The Kremlin, he said, fears that by sending troops into Kyrgyzstan, Russia could get pulled into a quagmire. "But there is also the feeling that Russia cannot afford this unrest to continue. Because its not clear where it will end."

    Russia has been ambivalent about its support for the U.S.-led war in Afghanistan. While it does not want the U.S. to grow too strong in the region, analysts say, it doesn't want the U.S. to lose the war, either, as disorder in Afghanistan would likely spill over into other Central Asian states of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan and perhaps Russia itself.

    Any serious disorder in Kyrgyzstan would not just disrupt NATO supply lines into the combat zone, but also possibly provide a new stomping ground for Islamist insurgents who have in the past been active in Kyrgyzstan's south and in Tajikistan, which also shares borders with both Kyrgyzstan and northern Afghanistan.

    Taliban insurgents have already taken control of formerly safe provinces of northern Afghanistan, and appear to be infiltrating Tajikistan. "In a worst-case scenario, we could see a safe haven for them in Kyrgyzstan," said Mr. Safranchuk. "Its not a very far distance to Afghanistan from there."

    Write to Kadyr Toktogulov at kadyr.toktogulov@dowjones.com and Alan Cullison at alan.cullison@wsj.com

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    MOC advises Chinese companies tread carefully in southern Kyrgyzstan

    English.news.cn 2010-06-13 23:55:02

    Asian Exodus: Video, images of Kyrgyzstan refugees caught in crisis



    BEIJING, June 13 (Xinhua) -- China's Ministry of Commerce advised representatives from China's companies to hold off traveling to southern Kyrgyzstan for investment and trade as the deadly ethnic clashes there have killed at least 82 people and wounded 1,000 as of Saturday.

    The ministry suggested Chinese people and Chinese-funded companies in Kyrgyzstan monitor developments and take precautionary measures against personal injuries and property losses, the ministry said in a statement posted on its website.

    Kyrgyzstan's interim government has declared a state of emergency and a 24-hour curfew in the southern city of Osh, where riots erupted on Thursday when quarrels between ethnic Kyrgyz and Uzbek escalated into running street battles.

    Editor: yan

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Russia sends troopers to Kyrgyzstan to protect Russian facilities: Interfax

    2010-06-14 10:30


    A battalion of Russian troopers have been sent to Kyrgyzstan to protect the Russian facilities in the Kant military base, Interfax news agency reported on Sunday.

    Three Ilyushin Il-76 military cargo aircraft, carrying humanitarian aids and the paratroopers from the 31st landing brigade of the Russian Air-Borne Force, have landed at the Russian air base on Sunday afternoon, a military source told Interfax.

    "The task of the battalion is to guard Russian military facilities and guarantee the security of Russian servicemen and their families," the source said.

    The battalion was transferred to Kant air base due to the aggravation of the situation in south Kyrgyzstan, he added.

    The paratroopers were armed with regular small arms and ammunition, and took the necessary food supplies, the source noted.

    Interfax has not obtained official confirmation of this information yet.

    Since the riot in April, two companies of Russian paratroopers have been staying at Kant air base under a decision of the chief of the Russian General Staff.

    The ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan have claimed the lives of at least 97 people and injured over 1,200 people, RIA

    Novosti news agency reported Sunday, citing a local health ministry spokesman.

    Source:Xinhua

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    A Russian Made Disaster in Kyrgyzstan

    Contributed by Sultan Knish (Reporter)
    Sunday, June 13, 2010 8:53



    The violence unleashed in Kyrgyzstan is being spun as ethnic rioting.

    The reality is a good deal more complex, and the blame can be laid directly at Russia's door.


    Russia's coup against the Bakiyev government which took power in the Tulip Revolution leveraged Uzbek separatists in the Osh Province to suppress Kyrgiz nationalist supporters of Bakiyev.

    Russia had been trying for a while to force out Manas Air Base, a US air force base that serves as a vital link to US forces in Afghanistan. Russia tolerated Bakiyev, so long as he was against the US base. But once Bakiyev made a deal with the United States, and began exploring an energy deal with China that might have ended Russian leverage over the country, Putin pulled off a coup during Obama's nuclear arms reduction treaty signing with Medvedev, a true "Godfather" moment.

    People like Uzbek nationalist leader Kadyrjan Batyrov were used to stage riots, and suppress counter-riots, in order to remove Bakiyev from power, and replace him with Roza Otunbayeva. Otunbayeva was a former Soviet diplomat at the UN, Marxist academic and local Communist party official. This completed a series of Russian reversals of "Revolutions" in former Republics and Warsaw Pact nations, with only Georgia still in the way. But the Kyrgyzstan coup left behind a lot of unfinished business.

    A Russian coup usually comes in several stages. First a wave of propaganda thunders forth from Russian media outlets, which are government controlled, blasting the government of the country they want to overthrow as corrupt and repressive. This is followed by a domestic uprising staged by organizations tied to Russia. If this uprising fails, a new wave of propaganda follows aimed more at the West, which brands the target government as repressive and contributing to regional instability (a coded threat which warns Western countries that if they attempt to intervene, it could lead to a regional conflict) and that leads to an invasion by Russian "peacekeepers".

    In Kyrgyzstan, Russia's coup succeeded, but at the cost of severely exasperating existing ethnic tensions. By leveraging Uzbek separatists like Kadyrjan Batyrov, Putin had managed to light the fuel dump of ethnic tensions that had been constantly simmering in Osh already. This was not entirely unplanned.

    In the Soviet era, Russian policy took a Divide and Conquer approach to the Republics, often transplanting ethnic populations or drawing borders so as to create multicultural tensions that would prevent the locals from uniting against them. This approach however leads to long term disastrous consequences, as it did when the British utilized it in Israel, importing Arabs to balance out Jewish immigration, resulting in decades of terrorism and war. In Kyrgyzstan, the toxic mix of Uzbeks, ethnic Russian settlers and others among the dominant Kyrgyz ethnic group means that Russia always has plenty of levers when it wants to destabilize the country, but that instability may not always end when Russia says it does.

    Uzbek separatism has been the explosive issue in the Osh Province because of its sizable number of Uzbeks. Which in turn has meant a region polarized between Kyrgyz nationalists determined to keep Osh and Uzbek nationalists who want secession or at least cultural autonomy. Former President Bakiyev who won solidly in the Osh Province with 2/3rds of the vote made some effort to defuse it, but because he was from Osh himself, he couldn't do so without alienating his own base, which due to Uzbek separatism, was both Kyrgyz and nationalist. This made Kadyrjan Batyrov and his Uzbek nationalists a handy tool for Moscow when they wanted to remove Bakiyev and replace him with their own puppet. But it also meant that Putin had lit a fire that couldn't easily be put out.

    By using Batyrov to enforce a takeover in a region ripe with Kyrgyz nationalists, Putin stoked fears of Uzbek separatism that would be backed by the full might of Mother Russia. Much as Putin had done for Abkhazians and Ossetians in Georgia. And indeed had Bakiyev managed to remain in power, the way that Saakashvili had-- there is little doubt that Russia would have backed Uzbek secession and used that as a pretext for invading Kyrgyzstan. Just as they did in Georgia.

    And since Kadyrjan Batyrov's Uzbek nationalists had used armed force to suppress pro-Bakiyev protesters, and with clan vendettas a major factor in the region, Osh was bound to be a tinderbox for some time to come. Russia's Otunbayeva puppet regime could not turn its back on Batyrov, because he had helped it secure power. But alienating a regional majority already afraid that they were about to become the next Kosovo or Georgia, was extremely unwise. For Otunbayeva anyway, less so for Russia, which might actually have been waiting all along for the chance to send in its "peacekeepers".

    The Kyrgyzstan armed forces had not proven useful to Bakiyev, but as they are in the vast majority Kyrgyz. They might not have been willing to back Bakiyev, but they would be even less willing to defend Batyrov and his followers. Batyrov's Uzbek group had warned that any attempt to arrest him for his armed suppression of protesters would be an attack on all Uzbeks. This insured that the formula for the rioting would fall along ethnic lines.

    Russia's government controlled media is predictably monopolizing the reporting, focusing on Uzbeks asking for Russian troops. The reality however is that Russia created the rioting and the massacres for its own agenda. Putin wanted to drive out the US airbase in Kyrgyzstan, even at the cost of inflaming ethnic tensions by appearing to endorse Uzbek separatism. Everything that followed can and should be laid at his doorstep.

    Now Putin is trying to bring in the People's Republic of China via the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to form a united front on Kyrgyzstan in support of his own Otunbayeva puppet regime. With a weak Obama Administration that was unable to respond even to Russia pulling off the Otunbayeva coup during an arms reduction treaty signing, as a deliberate slap in the face, Russia has nothing to worry about in the way of US interference. However it has a much bigger invisible problem to worry about.

    By feeding Uzbek separatism in Kyrgyzstan, Putin is empowering a population that has increasingly come under the sway of Islamist groups such as Hizb ut Tahir, whose goal is to rebuild the Caliphate. While the old Bakiyev government had cracked down on Islamists and in particularly on Hizb ut Tahir (to the outraged protests of European and Russian human rights activists), the Otunbayeva government has sought their support by giving them a pass. Including amnesty for Hizb ut Tahir members imprisoned in what Uzbek separatists and their human rights allies call, the Nootak Incident. Providing amnesty for participants in the Nootak Incident in which Hizb ut Tahir supporters rioted during Eid al-Fitr served as a dangerous message by the new government of open door for the Islamists.

    Hizb ut Tahir's strategy goes beyond Uzbek nationalism, but does piggyback on it. And it can best take advantage of the fighting in Kyrgyzstan by using the African model that has worked so well for Islamist groups there. While its base is still the Uzbeks near the border with Uzbekistan, it is also moving up into the north, and successfully recruiting Kyrgyz as well. This is in keeping with the phased approach utilized by Islamist groups in countries with an existing Islamic population and an impoverished rural base. (In Western nations however Islamists are a growth factor in urban or suburban areas where their base of Muslim immigrants tend to be located, while native non-Muslims living in rural areas tend to be their key source of opposition).

    While Otunbayeva's Social Democratic Party has not endorsed or legalized Hizb ut Tahir, the instability in the Osh Province, where Hizb ut Tahir, is strong, can only build support for them in the long run. Whether Uzbek separatism gains new life or is suppressed again, Hizb ut Tahir will begin to seem like more of a viable alternative, by promising traditional Islamic values as an alternative to the corruption of secular political parties. And while for now, religious parties have been banned, Hizb ut Tahir has financial backing built on oil money and a great deal of patience. While Putin tries to dominate Kyrgyzstan, Islamist groups know that they are the ones who will win in the end.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    Russia steps up Kyrgyzstan airbase protection


    Jun 13, 2010 20:26 Moscow Time


    Kyrgyzstan. Photo: EPA

    Russia has sent a battalion of elite paratroops on a mission to step up the protection of its Kant airbase in Kyrgyzstan.

    The development follows three days of ethnic rioting in that Central Asian country.

    Around a hundred people are reported dead and ten times as many injured after rival gangs from the ethnic Kyrgyz and the ethnic Uzbek communities ransacked and torched residential neighbourhoods, shops and bazaars in the southern regions of Osh and Jalalabad.

    The rioting and the looting are still going on.

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    CSTO leaves ‘all Kyrgyzstan options open’

    Jun 14, 2010 17:40 Moscow Time


    Kyrgyzstan. © Flickr.com/timbrauhn/cc-by

    After an emergency Moscow session of the national security chiefs of the Collective Security Treaty Organization statement was released which states that ‘all options open’ in dealing with the situation in Kyrgyzstan.



    The proposed measures include inter-ethnic dialogue and stricter border patrol, as well as the more usual security precautions.

    The security head of Kyrgyzstan also took part in the session, together with his counterparts in Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

    The session was convened by President Dmitry Medvedev, who used his powers as the current head of the CSTO group.

    http://english.ruvr.ru/2010/06/14/9784794.html

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    Default Re: Kyrgyzstan Uprising: Did Moscow Subvert a U.S. Ally?

    100,000 Uzbek refugees seek safety at border

    By SASHA MERKUSHEV and YURAS KARMANAU, Associated Press Writers Sasha Merkushev And Yuras Karmanau, Associated Press Writers 5 mins ago



    OSH, Kyrgyzstan – About 100,000 minority Uzbeks fleeing mobs of Kyrgyz massed at the border Monday, an Uzbek leader said, as the deadliest ethnic violence to hit this Central Asian nation in 20 years left a major city smoldering.

    Fires raged for a fourth day in the southern city of Osh, three miles (five kilometers) from the border with Uzbekistan. The official count was 138 dead and nearly 1,800 injured since the violence began last week, but an Uzbek community leader said at least 200 Uzbeks had already been buried, and the Red Cross said its delegates saw about 100 bodies being buried in just one cemetery.

    The United States and Russia, which both have military bases in Kyrgyzstan away from the violence, worked on humanitarian aid airlifts, as did the United Nations. Neighboring Uzbekistan hastily set up camps to handle the flood of hungry, frightened refugees. Most were women, children and the elderly, many of whom Uzbekistan said had gunshot wounds.

    The interim government, which took over when former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev was ousted in an April uprising, has been unable to stop the violence and accused Bakiyev's family of instigating it to halt a June 27 referendum on a new constitution. Uzbeks, who are a minority in Kyrgyzstan as a whole but whose numbers rival the Kyrgyz in the south of the country, have backed the interim government. Many Kyrgyz in the south have supported Bakiyev.

    Kyrgyz security chief Kenishbek Duishebayev said Monday evening on television that Bakiyev's younger son, Maxim, was arrested earlier in the day in Britain when he flew into a Hampshire airport on a leased private plane.

    Prosecutors, who placed him on an international wanted list in May, alleged that companies he owned avoided almost $80 million in taxes on aviation fuel sold to suppliers of the U.S. air base.

    The violent protests that led to President Bakiyev's ouster were fed by anger over corruption permeating his extended family, which grew wealthy and powerful under his rule. The new government has been under pressure to bring them to justice.

    The government said earlier Monday it had arrested a "well-known person" suspected of stoking the violence, but gave no other details. Suspects from Tajikistan, Afghanistan and Kyrgyzstan were also detained and claimed to have been hired by supporters of Bakiyev, government spokesman Farid Niyazov said.

    It now appears unlikely this month's referendum will take place. New parliamentary elections are scheduled for October, but the violence appears aimed at undermining the interim government before then.

    From his self-imposed exile in Belarus, Bakiyev has denied any role in the violence. Speaking to reporters Monday, he again blamed the interim government for not preventing the rioting and called on the Moscow-dominated Collective Security Treaty Organization to send in troops. The new Kyrgyz government asked Russia to send troops, but the Kremlin turned down the request.

    Jallahitdin Jalilatdinov, who heads the Uzbek National Center, told The Associated Press on Monday that at least 100,000 Uzbeks were awaiting entry into Uzbekistan, while another 80,000 had crossed the border. The Uzbek government said 45,000 had already been registered.

    An AP reporter saw hundreds of Uzbek refugees stuck in a no-man's-land at a border crossing near Jalal-Abad. An AP photographer saw hundreds of refugees in a camp on the Uzbek side.

    Shaken refugees claimed that many Uzbek girls had been raped and that Kyrgyz snipers had shot at them from the hills as they rushed toward the border.

    U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay expressed alarm at the violence and urged the authorities to protect all citizens irrespective of their ethnicity.

    "It seems indiscriminate killings, including of children, and rapes have been taking place on the basis of ethnicity," Pillay said in a statement.

    "This is a very dangerous situation, given the ethnic patchwork in this part of Kyrgyzstan, as well as in neighboring areas of Uzbekistan," she said. "It has been known for many years that this region is a potential tinder box, and for that reason it is essential that the authorities act firmly to halt the fighting — which appears to be orchestrated, targeted and well-planned — before it spreads further inside Kyrgyzstan or even across the border into neighboring countries."

    The fertile Ferghana Valley, where Osh and Jalal-Abad are located, once belonged to a single feudal lord, but was split by Soviet dictator Josef Stalin among Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, rekindling old rivalries.

    In 1990, hundreds were killed in a land dispute between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in Osh, Kyrgyzstan's second-largest city, and only the quick deployment of Soviet troops quelled the fighting. A year later, the Soviet Union collapsed, and new tensions rose between Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan over distribution of irrigation water, natural gas and electricity.

    Uzbeks make up 15 percent of Kyrgyzstan's 5 million people and are generally better off economically, but they have few representatives in power and have pushed for broader political and cultural rights. Both ethnic groups are predominantly Sunni Muslim.

    Few police or troops were seen on the streets of Osh, a city of 250,000. Food and water were scarce after armed looters smashed stores, stealing everything from TVs to food. Cars stolen from ethnic Uzbeks raced around the city, most crowded with young Kyrgyz wielding sharpened sticks, axes and metal rods.

    In the mainly Uzbek district of Aravanskoe, an area formerly brimming with shops and restaurants, whole streets were burned to the ground. In one still-smoldering building, an AP photographer saw three charred bodies.

    Hundreds gathered at Osh's central square to get on buses for the airport. Gunmen have made the road from the city to the airport too dangerous to tackle alone.

    Osh Police Chief Kursan Asanov told AP that 950 foreigners — mostly Russians, Pakistanis, Indians and Africans — have been evacuated since disturbances began, as well as Uzbek and Kyrgyz residents.

    "The entire city is in the state of panic — you see for yourselves — because all people have children," said resident Galina Nikolayevna.

    Mukaddas Jamolova, 54, from Kara-Su, near Osh, said she saw looters burn down many Uzbek homes. She said her house was not burned down but the family can't flee to Uzbekistan as they fear armed attackers.

    In another city beset by violence, Jalal-Abad, 25 miles (40 kilometers) from Osh, armed Kyrgyz massed at the central square to hunt down an Uzbek community leader who they blame for starting the trouble.

    In the village of Sura-Tash, ethnic Uzbeks converted a mosque into a makeshift hospital. Using rudimentary supplies, health workers treated anyone who came in with wounds from beatings or ordinary conditions such as heat exhaustion and diabetes.

    Some sought shade in the mosque, but hundreds were forced to wait outside in the sun.

    Vodka was used to sterilize medical equipment and powdered plaster was melted down to turn into casts for broken limbs.

    One doctor said those who attacked the Uzbeks seemed to have the support of the Kyrgyz military.

    "Many people have died, snipers fired from more than one kilometer away, and organized gangs followed the military as they drove in with armored personnel carriers," said Dr. Lutsalla Khakimov, who was working at the mosque. "This was organized, they wanted to start a war."

    Some victims said they had been raped.

    As the clashes continued, desperately needed aid began trickling into the south. Several planes arrived at Osh's airport with tons of medical supplies from the World Health Organization. Trucks carried supplies into the city with an armed escort.

    The U.S. had a shipment of tents, cots and medical supplies ready to fly to Osh from its Manas air base in Bishkek, the U.S. Embassy said.

    The U.S. and Russia military bases are in northern Kyrgyzstan, away from the rioting. Russia sent in an extra battalion to protect its air base. The U.S. Manas air base is a crucial supply hub for the coalition fighting the Taliban in Afghanistan.

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    Nikita Khrushchev: "We will bury you"
    "Your grandchildren will live under communism."
    “You Americans are so gullible.
    No, you won’t accept
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    outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of
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    until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism.

    To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 15 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
    ."
    We’ll so weaken your
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    until you’ll
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    like overripe fruit into our hands."



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