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Wednesday, May 18, 2005

 

The Kazakh government's view

Here's how the neighbours are portraying events in Uzbekistan. From the official Kazakh news agency:

At the Tuesday briefing in the Prosecutor General’s Office President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov accused a number of foreign mass media in groundless highlighting of events in Andizhan, Kazinform correspondent reports from Tashkent.

In particular the NTV channel was whipped for incorrect interpretation of the events. Uzbekistani President denied the information spread by NTV about 500 people killed in Andijan and the death of 200 more people in Pakhtaabad district of Andijan oblast.

The President requested foreign media to refer to the data of the Prosecutor General’s Office of Uzbekistan. During the briefing the country’s Prosecutor General Rashitzhon Kadyrov informed 169 citizens had been killed, 32 being law enforcement agents. Several hostages – three women and two under-age children - were lost as well.

Islam Karimov flatly disproved the statements of foreign media about the command to shoot peaceful citizens allegedly given by the local authorities.
The information about the number of victims and the questions how peaceful citizens could have been killed is interpreted differently by world media. Some of them refer to Uzbekistani law forces whose information differs from that of Prosecutor General’s.

The main factor obstructing fair coverage of the events appears inefficient access of reporters to the spots of events. Uzbekistani authorities promise to provide a trip for representatives of the diplomatic corps and journalists to Andijan.

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