International efforts needed to quell Kyrgyzstan violence - Obama
The situation in Kyrgyzstan should be settled through international efforts, U.S. President Barack Obama said at a press conference with his Russian counterpart Dmitry Medvedev on Thursday, RIA Novosti reported.
Clashes between ethnic Kyrgyz and Uzbeks, who account for about 15% of Kyrgyzstan's population, broke out in the southern Kyrgyz city of Osh on June 11, lasting several days and spreading to nearby Jalalabad. The official death toll exceeded 260, but the actual death count could be ten times higher.
The situation in the region remains highly volatile, and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) proposed on Wednesday sending international police to prevent the spread of violence in the Central Asian republic.
The Kyrgyz interim government asked Russia to send troops to Kyrgyzstan to help quench the unrest, but Medvedev said Thursday Russia is not yet planning to send peacekeepers to the country.
Medvedev is winding up his visit to the United States, during which he visited California's Silicon Valley and held talks with Obama. He will head to Canada that hosts the G8 and G20 summits, due Friday through Sunday.