Kyrgyzstan: Relative Calm Returns, US Base Fate on Hold

New Leader Turns to Russia for Aid

Violence in Kyrgyzstan appears to have more or less subsided as thousands of people took to the streets in the capital city of Bishkek to commemorate the scores of protesters killed in the ousted government’s failed attempt to quell the uprising.

Ousted President Bakiyev is still in the nation’s south attempting to drum up support to get him back into power, while the de facto leader, Roza Otunbayeva, has offered to guarantee him safe passage out of the country, and says they will do everything possible to prevent a civil war.

Kyrgyzstan’s most noteworthy feature internationally is that it houses military bases for both Russia and the United States. Though the Russian base appears secure, some members of the new interim government have called for the US base’s closure. Otunbayeva has insisted that this is not something to be dealt with in the near future, however.

Rather the government’s top priority is to stabilize the economy amid claims that the treasury was looted. Otunbayeva has sent a team to Moscow in an effort to secure foreign aid from Russia, the first nation to officially recognize the new regime.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is senior editor of