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March 07, 2011

Kyrgyz Leader Lauded in Washington

Kyrgyz President Roza Otunbayeva was in Washington Tuesday to receive a 2011 International Women of Courage Award.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton praised Ms. Otunbayeva as a unifying force that helped keep Kyrgyzstan whole after tragedy and upheaval.

Ms. Otunbayeva led the interim government that took power after then-President Kurmanbek Bakiyev was toppled in a deadly uprising last April.  

Clinton also said the Kyrgyz president serves as an example for new democracies because of the way she agreed to turn power over to a new government.

On Monday, Ms. Otunbayeva met with U.S. President Barack Obama and National Security Advisor Tom Donilon.

Mr. Obama reaffirmed Washington's support for Kyrgyzstan's democratic efforts.

The two leaders also discussed humanitarian and economic concerns, as well as drug trafficking and terrorism.