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'Violence in Kyrgyzstan orchestrated and well-planned'

Wednesday, June 16, 2010 09:19:18 AM, Agencies

Thousands of Uzbeks flee ethnic riots in Kyrgyzstan: Mobs of rioters slaughtered Uzbeks and burned their homes and businesses in Kyrgyzstan's worst ethnic  .... Read Full

Indian Govt. to airlift citizens out of riot-hit Kyrgyzstan

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All Indian nationals stranded in Kyrgyzstan safely evacuated

Death toll in Kyrgyzstan violence could be higher

OSH (Kyrgyzstan): The United Nation has found evidence of bloody intent behind the chaos in Kyrgyzstan that killed hundreds, left the nation's second-biggest city a smoldering ruin and sent more than 100,000 ethnic Uzbeks fleeing.

The declaration by the U.N. that the fighting was "orchestrated, targeted and well-planned" — set off by organized groups of gunmen in ski masks — bolsters government claims that hired attackers marauded through Osh, shooting at both Kyrgyz and Uzbeks to inflame old tensions.

Rupert Colville, spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said, "It might be wrong to cast it, at least in origin, as an inter-ethnic conflict. There seems to be other agendas driving it initially."

He told a news briefing in Geneva that the UN human rights office had collected witness accounts, including from UN staff, in the cities of Osh and Jalal'abad.

"Several of these reports suggest that the incident began with five simultaneous attacks in Osh involving men wearing balaclavas and carrying guns. It looked like they were seeking to provoke a reaction," he said.

Colville said that one of the attacks was on a gym which he said was "known to be the haunt of a criminal gang".

"Targeting that gym was likely to provoke a reaction."

The UN was not in a position to make any direct accusations against any particular individuals or groups at this point, Colville said.

Witnesses have said the unrest started with mobs of Kyrgyz men attacking ethnic Uzbeks and torching their homes.

The interim government, which assumed power after the president was overthrown in April, has repeatedly accused Kurmanbek Bakiyev, the ousted president, of stoking the conflict.

Otunbayeva told Al Jazeera on Tuesday that she had "no doubt" Bakiyev was to blame.

"His sons have been discussing that they want to organise such a crisis and we thought not of such a scale and not of such a deepness," she said.


About a month ago, an audio recording was posted anonymously on YouTube with a caption identifying the voices as those of Bakiyev's son Maxim and his uncle Janybek.

The men were discussing plans to arm groups to spread chaos across the south of Kyrgyzstan, sometime in June.

Both men have denied the authenticity of the tape and Bakiyev has repeatedly said he has no involvement in the violence.

The interim government has accused Maxim Bakiyev of financing the ongoing clashes.

"This was all well organised, and the 'wallet' of these riots is the son of the former president, Maxim Bakiyev, who started financing the riots back in April," Atambayev, the deputy interim leader, said at a news conference.

The younger Bakiyev is said to have paid $10 million to organise the fighting. He was arrested by UK authorities on Monday as he landed at Farnborough airport in a private aircraft.

The Kyrgyz government said it would seek his extradition.






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