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Kyrgyzstan to Expel to US Diplomats


An official in Kyrgyzstan says the country has decided to expel two U.S. diplomats.

The head of Kyrgyzstan's official Human Rights Commission, Tursunbek Akun, says the country's foreign ministry has made the decision. Kyrgyzstan's government has not commented or explained.

The U.S. embassy, on its website, said it is disturbed by the news. It said the diplomats are accused of having "inappropriate" contacts with leaders of non-governmental organizations.

The embassy statement said the expulsion can be seen as an attempt to intimidate embassies and silence "the voice of civil society."

The expulsions come as a new round of talks over a U.S. airbase in Kyrgyzstan are set to begin. Kyrgyzstan wants to increase the annual rent to $200 million. The U.S. has been using the base to support operations in neighboring Afghanistan in the war on terror.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.