Otunbayeva hopes OSCE police force will help assure human rights in Kyrgyzstan
Kyrgyz President Roza Otunbayeva expressed hope on Wednesday that OSCE police consultants to be sent to the republic would help prevent human rights violations that still remain a high concern in the aftermath of June's riots in the republic, RIA Novosti reported.
"I believe that international [police] forces should be deployed [in Kyrgyzstan] because we are so far unable to protect our citizen's rights. This is not because I acknowledge [our] own powerlessness, but the situation in very difficult," Otunbayeva said in an interview with Russian news agencies.
Kyrgyzstan saw violent interethnic clashes in mid-June that killed up to 300 people according to official estimates, with the unofficial death toll reaching 3,000. About 100,000 people fled to neighboring Uzbekistan to avoid the worst interethnic violence in two decades. Hundreds of houses have been destroyed in the riot-hit Osh and Jalalabad regions.
Following the riots, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe agreed to provide support to Kyrgyzstan, which would include a police mission of 52 officers sent to the country's violence-hit southern regions. The final decision on the issue is to be taken on Thursday.
"We are in desperate need of third forces, either Russian, or Ukrainian, or whatever, so they would part the conflicting sides," Otunbayeva said, adding that the situation in the country's south remains strained following the unrest.
She said some Kyrgyz "politicos or just nationalists" were against the OSCE police mission in Kyrgyzstan. There are "third forces who are interested in accelerating tensions" in the republic, which would jeopardize security in the entire Central Asian region.
Otunbayeva said military equipment promised to Kyrgyzstan by the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) would also come in handy.