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Uzbekistan Rejects International Probe into Andijan Violence


Uzbekistan has rejected a call from NATO's inter-parliamentary assembly for an international inquiry into recent violence in Andijan, but said foreign diplomats can monitor its own probe.

Uzbek Foreign Minister Elyor Ganiyev proposed setting up a group of representatives of foreign embassies in Tashkent that would monitor the probe.

NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer asked for the investigation after allegations that Uzbek troops used excessive force against unarmed civilians. NATO parliamentarians urged member states to halt support for Uzbek armed forces unless a probe was conducted.

Witnesses and Uzbek opposition groups say as many as 1,000 people were killed in the crackdown. The government put the death toll at 173.

Some information for this report provided by AP and AFP.

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