The violent summer crackdown against the ethnic Uzbek regions of Kyrgyzstan were facilitated in part by the nation’s military, a report confirmed today, adding that the attacks amounted to “crimes against humanity.”
Kyrgyzstan saw the ouster of pro-US ruler Kermanbek Bakiyev in April, 2010, after his violent crackdown against protesters in the north. He was replaced by an interim pro-Russian government which loudly condemned the crackdowns, but was in practice supportive of the crackdowns on Uzbeks in Osh and other southern cities.
Hundreds if not thousands of Uzbeks were killed in the crackdown, while over 100,000 others fled to neighboring Uzbekistan. Though interim leader Roza Otunbayeva condemned the violence, some was committed by official security forces, and the report also confirmed reports that the troops armed anti-Uzbek mobs before welcoming them into the cities.
The Otunbayeva-led government slammed the report, saying it was unfairly critical of ethnic Kyrgyz mobs for the violence while treating the slain Uzbeks as victims. They warned the report threatened to spawn new unrest.