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Bildt calls for action over Kyrgyzstan unrest

Bildt calls for action over Kyrgyzstan unrest

Published: 22 Jun 2010 07:35 GMT+02:00
Updated: 22 Jun 2010 07:35 GMT+02:00

Sweden's Foreign Minister Carl Bildt has joined his German counterpart, Guido Westerwelle, on Monday to express their deep concern over the ongoing violence in the central Asian republic of Kyrgyzstan urging international intervention.

"The situation is alarming," Bildt said at a joint press conference with Westerwelle in Stockholm on Monday.

Bildt emphasised the need for rapid action "in order to contribute to the confidence that is a necessity for people to start returning home."

"If you don't get people to start moving home fairly rapidly, you easily create a situation that sort of breeds resentment for years to come, and then there could be a very volatile and explosive situation," he cautioned.

"We are very concerned," Westerwelle said.

He joined Bildt in saying that Europe needed to act quickly to "protect our European citizens in the region (and) protect all the refugees, (to make sure) the borders are opened so that they have a chance to survive and to come into safer circumstances."

Officials and aid agencies say the clashes between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks have killed up to 2,000 people and affected up to one million, including 300,000 people displaced in Kyrgyzstan and 100,000 who have fled to neighbouring Uzbekistan.

It was of the utmost importance, Westerwelle stressed, "to stabilise the whole situation in the region ... I think the whole region has understood how explosive the situation could develop if we don't act now."

The Kyrgyz riots were the worst inter-ethnic clashes to hit the impoverished Central Asian state since the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Victims of the unrest have told AFP that the violence was a brutal and orchestrated campaign by armed militias of ethnic Kyrgyz targeting Uzbeks, who

make up 14 percent of Kyrgyzstan's population of 5.3 million.

Kyrgyzstan's interim leader Roza Otunbayeva has insisted the country would go ahead with a referendum Sunday on a new constitution, saying it was vital for stability.

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:04 June 22, 2010 by calebian22
So much for Islamic brotherhood. Kyrgyz and Uzbeks are both overwhelmingly Sunni muslim.
09:10 June 22, 2010 by Frobobbles
I didn't know Carl Bildt had an oil company there too.
09:25 June 22, 2010 by concha de tu puta madre
@Calebian22. The world never react when islamist are doing the killing. Maybe Bildt and his goons could organize an end of violence mountain trek to Kyrgyzstan. I will donate the camels.
09:50 June 22, 2010 by Marc the Texan
Sounds like a job for Swedish Rapid Reaction Force! Oh wait... nevermind...

Plan B - Rally Germany's lobbying forces to cajole the the Yanks and Brits into action.
12:00 June 22, 2010 by bjinger
the sort of killings in world war two should not be repeated.but who knows the international intervention will add oil to the fire.
14:25 June 22, 2010 by Audrian
This conflict is a tragedy that fulfills no purpose. When and if a dictator leaves civil war is the natural consequence. This poor country is now suffering because its dictator had wanted to rule indefinitly. This is his way of making the opposition suffer!

Where is Russia in all this? Why is it the organization of ex-Soviet States did not interven to save lives?
14:39 June 22, 2010 by bjinger
if a relatively small and weak country that has successfully attacted the foreign power stratigic attention, the country definitely will have so-called dictator problem, and should be removed. Europen history has shown us that ill-willed foreign intervention will largely lead to a disaster.
15:24 June 22, 2010 by Great Scott
Stay out of this bildt it's not your problem, you know every time you open your mouth you make another problem. Its better you go and plan your excuse for the oil war crimes you are facing.
17:13 June 22, 2010 by Mackan2017
Seriously, why not parachute the Swedish Army into the centre of the action to calm things down and keep order? I'm sure they'd do a fantastic job.

**cough**
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