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Unintended consequences in Belarus

If a Russian-backed revolution forces the president of a former Soviet state to flee, one of the last places you'd expect him to go is Belarus. But Minsk appears to be a surprisingly congenial place for Russia-bashing. Kyrgyzstan's deposed president Kurmanbek Bakiyev late last week openly suggested -- without providing much evidence -- that Russia pushed him out because of his refusal to kick the U.S. out of its air base there:

Asked about speculation that Moscow may have played a role in the uprising, Bakiyev said Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin had been unhappy at his decision in 2009 to extend the lease on the U.S. base.

"They told me: 'Why are you holding on to this Manas base, this worries us, this does not suit us'," Bakiyev told reporters in Russian at a news conference.

"Russia's leadership was irritated, annoyed by the presence of the base and this factor also played a certain role."

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Unintended consequences in Belarus

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