Kyrgyzstan clears barricades from ravaged southern city

Kyrgyzstan`s military began clearing barricades from around Uzbek neighbourhoods in the ravaged city of Osh after extending a state of emergency in the country`s volatile south.

Osh,(Kyrgyzstan): Kyrgyzstan`s military
began clearing barricades from around Uzbek neighbourhoods in
the ravaged city of Osh Sunday after extending a state of
emergency in the country`s volatile south.

The removals proceeded calmly despite earlier fears that
the clearing of the makeshift barricades would provoke further
violence in the Central Asian state, which was rocked last
week by deadly ethnic clashes between the majority Kyrgyz and
minority Uzbek populations.

Armoured military vehicles pushed aside burnt-out cars,
concrete pillars and cut-down trees that were set up outside
Uzbek districts during the violence, which officials say may
have killed up to 2,000 and forced 400,000 from their homes.

In some areas Uzbek residents were even assisting the
military in pulling down the barricades, which authorities had
said would be removed, by force if necessary, by 1200 GMT
today.

"The operation is going well," Lieutenant Colonel Zhunus
Kalmatov, who was overseeing the removal of some barricades,
said.

Watching as barricades were taken down in the
neighbourhood of Shahid-Tepa, 64-year-old resident Salizhan
Numanzhanov said she hoped life was starting to get back to
normal.

PTI

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