Death toll in Kyrgyz ethnic clashes rises to 178
At least 178 people have been killed in inter-ethnic clashes in southern Kyrgyzstan, including 132 in the country's second largest city of Osh, the 24.kg agency said on Tuesday, citing a health ministry report.
A total of 1,866 people have also sought medical aid, and 836 of them have been hospitalized as unrest continues in the former Soviet republic, RIA Novosti reported.
Eyewitnesses say casualty figures may be way higher as many residents as many families prefer to bury their dead without notifying the authorities. In addition, doctors have been unable to respond to all calls for assistance due to the fighting.
Only one foreigner - a Pakistani national - is listed among the dead so far, the Kyrgyz foreign ministry said on its website.
A total of 120 Chinese nationals, 120 Pakistani citizens and eight Georgians have been taken to Osh airport. Previous reports said more than a thousand foreigners were evacuated from violence-hit areas.
Foreign countries, including Russia, Germany, China and Pakistan are sending humanitarian aid to the Central Asian state.
The U.S. expressed its concern over the situation in Kyrgyzstan and said it was ready to render all the necessary assistance to neighboring Uzbekistan, to where over 80,000 ethnic Uzbeks have fled.