Bishkek: A blast rocked the
center of Kyrgyzstan's capital Tuesday ahead of a visit by US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, slightly wounding two police officers, a day after security forces battled
Islamic militants in a restive southern city.
Authorities said the explosion took place in the early
morning outside the venue of a high-profile trial against top
officials of the recently deposed government.
The blast, which formed a deep crater in the road, was
set off outside an entrance used by defendants in the trial.
The Health Ministry said two police officers were lightly
Clinton is due to travel to the country Thursday. Her
visit comes amid US attempts to buttress stability in the
troubled former Soviet nation, which hosts a key air transit
facility used a jumping-off point for troops travelling to and
from nearby Afghanistan.
Tensions are high in the Central Asian nation amid
sensitive political bargaining over the formation of a new
government and renewed violence in the restive south.
Clashes between security forces and Islamic militants
broke out yesterday in the city of Osh. Officials said the
militants were planning a series of terrorist attacks in the
Three insurgents were shot and killed by government forces during the gunbattle, while another militant blew himself up. One soldier was wounded.
Security Council Secretary Marat Imankulov said three
suspects detained after the firefight were members of the
Islamic Movement of Turkestan.
A Kyrgyz court is hearing the case against 28 former
officials, including the self-exiled former President
Kurmanbek Bakiyev, on charges they were complicit in ordering
troops to open fire on demonstrators during protests in April
that brought down the government.
Lawyers have complained they and their clients have
been subjected to threats and intimidation.
First Published: Tuesday, November 30, 2010, 15:27