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Wednesday, July 06, 2005


Kyrgyzstan stops repatriating Uzbeks

From BBC News:

Kyrgyzstan has called a partial halt to the repatriation of refugees who fled Uzbekistan in May, after a bloody crackdown in the Uzbek city of Andijan.
Foreign Minister Rosa Otunbayeva said no Uzbeks would be returned unless the country's situation changed.

However, the chief prosecutor said 12 Uzbeks who are already convicted criminals will still be repatriated.

Hundreds of refugees sought shelter in Kyrgyzstan after Uzbek government troops fired on protesters in Andijan.

Kyrgyzstan's government has already sent back four Uzbeks and announced it would deport 29 more.

The United Nations has said the decision to return refugees violated international conventions.

Top Kyrgyz prosecutor Azimbek Beknazarov, who has spearheaded moves to deport the Uzbeks, said on Tuesday that 12 Uzbeks would still be returned because, as convicted criminals, they did not have refugee status.

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