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Partial Military Mobilization Raises Risks in Kyrgyzstan

Black smoke rises over Osh as ethnic conflict explodes. (Photo: Dalton Bennett)

Kyrgyzstan's provisional government is partially mobilizing its armed forces, raising the possibility of the military's attempted intervention in civil violence that has devastated southern regions of the Central Asian nation. Some experts are interpreting the move as a sign of desperation.

At least 97 people have died in inter-ethnic violence that erupted late on June 10, the AKIpress news agency reported. The center of Osh, Kyrgyzstan's second largest city, has suffered extensive damage from arson and looting. The focus of mob violence was reportedly shifting to villages surrounding Osh on June 13. In Jalal-abad, meanwhile, firefights were said to be raging, causing heavy casualties mainly among Uzbeks.  

With police and Interior Ministry forces unable to stop the death and destruction, provisional leaders on June 12 turned to the armed forces. A decree ordered partial mobilization to commence on June 13, with able-bodied men under 50 called upon to report for active duty.

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Partial Military Mobilization Raises Risks in Kyrgyzstan

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