News / Asia

Kyrgyzstan Accuses Former President's Son of Financing Violence

Security officials in Kyrgyzstan claim the son of former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev offered to pay $30 million to militant groups, including the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, to spark violence and destabilize Kyrgyzstan.

Lawyers for Maxim Bakiyev say he is innocent.

The allegations against the Bakiyev family have not been independently confirmed, but they do raise the question of how to investigate the recent violence.  The former president was ousted from power in a violent uprising in April, and is living in Belarus.  The new interim government has previously accused him and his family of instigating the recent inter-ethnic fighting that killed more than 2,000 people, mostly ethnic Uzbeks.

Kyrgyzstan has launched its own criminal investigation, and there are reports that Uzbek authorities have done the same. But analysts question whether the two countries can conduct these probes in a balanced manner.

Sergei Arutyunov, an anthropologist at the Russian Academy of Sciences says such investigations must be handled by international organizations. As examples, he cites the investigation of war crimes in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, and says the Kyrgyz conflict also involved genocide and international crime.

Russia has remained largely detached from the conflict in Kyrgyzstan, a former Soviet Republic, despite earlier calls from the country's interim government for Moscow to send peacekeepers.

Russia is wise to stay out of the conflict, said Arutyunov.  If they come to assist the Kyrgyz, he said, Uzbekistan will complain; if they assist the Uzbeks, then Kyrgyzstan will complain.

Meanwhile, tens of thousands of refugees who fled the ethnic clashes in southern Kyrgyzstan are returning home in droves, as violence subsides.  Camps in neigboring Uzbekistan are emptying out, according to Joe Lowry from the Red Cross, Red Crescent Federation.

Lowry said, in the past few days, the population of a camp in Uzbekistan 20 kilometers from the southern Kyrgyz city, Osh, has dwindled from 3,000 to about 580.

"It seems the natural instinct is to want to go home to where you're from and to see if your property is intact and to see how your family are... and so on," said Lowry. "And also, some areas are very quiet and didn't see much violence."

Lowry said refugees have gotten adequate supplies, food and medical care.  Aid workers now are looking ahead, trying to address long-term needs.

"There are also questions about the families being separated.  Mainly, its 90 percent women and children here.  There are very very few young men.  So there are also questions about what will happen to children long-term," said Lowry.

Some 400,000 people, mainly ethnic Uzbeks, fled violence that broke out in southern Kyrgyzstan, earlier this month.  About 80,000 of them crossed the border into Uzbekistan.

U.S. officials have called for an independent probe into the causes of the violence.  Kyrgyz officials say they have begun criminal investigations.

You May Like

Captured IS Militants Explain Why They Fought

Fighters from Turkey, Syria tell VOA Kurdish Service what drew them to extremism, jihad More

Security Experts Split on Kenyan Barrier Wall

Experts divided on whether initiative aiming to keep out al-Shabab militants is long-awaited solution or misguided effort More

Video Philippines Wants Tourists Spending Money at New Casinos

Officials say they hope to turn Manila into the next Macau, which has long been Asia’s gambling hub More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More