Bishkek's recent agreement with Moscow to create a new military base in southern Kyrgyzstan is complicating relations among Central Asian states. Uzbek and Tajik leaders are questioning the logic behind the Kremlin's decision, and are warning that a new base could turn into a source of regional instability.
Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev agreed in early August that the base, which would operate under the auspices of the Moscow-led Collective Security Treaty Organization, would be situated in southern Kyrgyzstan. [For background see the Eurasia Insight archive]. The two parties are expected to sign a final agreement spelling out specific conditions by November 1.
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Alisher Khamidov is a researcher based in South Kyrgyzstan.