05/13/2011, 00.00
KYRGYZSTAN
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Kyrgyzstan to compensate victims of June 2010 ethnic clashes

Clashes disproportionately affected ethnic Uzbeks. An independent commission concludes that violence was the direct responsibility of the Kyrgyz military.
Bishkek (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The Kyrgyz government will pay compensation to the families of the victims of interethnic clashes of June 2010, which left 470 people dead (more than 2,000 according to some sources), especially among ethnic Uzbek. The international Kyrgyzstan Inquiry Commission (KIC) blames the government for not stopping the violence.

The government set compensation at 1,000,000 soms (US$ 21,400) per family whose relatives died or are still missing because of the violence of June 2010. The decree stipulates that citizens with severe injuries will receive 100,000 soms (,140) and those who suffered minor injuries will get 50,000 soms (,070).

In June 2010, clashes broke out between ethnic Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in the provinces of Osh and Jalalabad. Uzbek and independent sources blame police and the military for abetting, or at least not preventing, violence against Kyrgyzstan’s Uzbek community, which suffered huge material loss, including burnt houses, as well dead and wounded. In fact, Uzbeks accounted for three-quarters of the casualties and nine-tenths of the property losses. Thousands of ethnic Uzbeks were hurt, hundreds of thousands fled and many are still missing.

Each side blames the other for the violence. Osh Mayor Melisbek Myrzakmatov holds the then-interim government of Roza Otumbayeva responsible for exacerbating ethnic hostilities in order to crack down on deposed President Kurmanbek Bakiyev’s strongholds. “The people of Osh city never forgive their misdeeds,” he said.

Set up at the initiative of Nordic nations, the commission released its report on Wednesday, which President Otunbayeva accepted.

The document concluded that the killing did not qualify as genocide, because the violence was not systematic. However, it did find that the military was at the least complicit, and at the worst took part, in the events. “Had those troops been properly instructed and deployed, it would have been possible to prevent or stop the violence,” the report said.

In a few days, more than 110,000 people fled to neighbouring Uzbekistan, from where most have returned. Some 300,000 stayed in the country but abandoned their homes, many of which were pillaged.

In Kyrgyzstan, ethnic Kyrgyz represent 70 per cent of the 5.5 million population. Uzbeks are 15 per cent.

Kyrgyz authorities said they were hardly to blame for the violence, given the fact that the provisional government had not yet taken full control of the country’s security forces and military.

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See also
Fear of humanitarian tragedy in southern part of the country
15/06/2010
State of emergency imposed after ethnic violence kills two, wounds dozens
20/05/2010
Violence continues in southern Kyrgyzstan, Medecins sans frontières reports
04/08/2010
Clashes with troops in Osh, more dead
21/06/2010
Uzbeks accused of masterminding the ethnic violence that victimised them
01/10/2010


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