Uzbek Border Opens; 6,000 Refugees Pouring in from Kyrgyzstan
Uzbekistan has opened up two checkpoints to enable both ethnic Uzbek and Kyrgyz citizens of Kyrgyzstan to cross the border into Uzbekistan, ca-news.org and AKIpress.org reported. Cholponbek Turusbekov, deputy head of the Kyrgyz Border Service told AKIpress.org that the Akbuura and Aravan crossings in the Aravan and Kara-Suu districts were opened.
"Crossing into the territory of Uzbekistan is already underway," he said.
About 6,000 refugees from Osh region have have gathered near the border and are trying to cross into Uzbekistan, AKIpress.org reports, citing the National Society of the Red Crescent in Kyrgyzstan. About 700 refugees from Kyrgyzstan have already crossed into Uzbekistan, rian.ru reported, citing Turusbekov.
The Uzbek Andijan Red Crescent Society and the Uzbek government are responding on the Uzbek side of the border, Elena Pavliuk, the press secretary of the Red Crescent Society stated. Tent camps have not yet been set up, and refugees are being sent to the homes of local residents, she said.
A user by the nickname of Nurbek has commented, "We need peace-keeping forces to get here faster and pacify everyone or our own guys to calm things down...We Kyrgyz have lost the information war in any case. Everything is all one-sided."
Another user with the nickname GurgasaR has said. "We don't need to bring in UN or CSTO troops, our own forces are sufficient, just the will of the leaders [is needed], and that's it..."
The Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) is the Russian-led regional security organization of the Commonwealth of Independent States which includes Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Russia has said in the past that the CSTO was not intended to be used to quell civic unrest, and has announced that it does not see the need to have Russian troops take part in stabilizing the situation in Kyrgyzstan, 24.kg reported.