Russia denies hand behind Kyrgyz uprising, offers aid

Last Updated: Thursday, April 8, 2010 - 20:12

Zeenews Bureau

Moscow: The Russian Foreign Ministry has rejected the claims of Moscow’s involvement in the ongoing upheaval in Kyrgyzstan as “crass” and “groundless”.

In the meantime, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin denied accusations that Russia has agreed to back opposition forces in the former Soviet republic. However, he today held a telephonic conversation with Kyrgyzstan`s interim premier Roza Otunbayeva and offered necessary humanitarian assistance to the Central Asian nation.

During the conversation, Putin asked the interim authorities to refrain from violence and to take all the necessary steps to ensure the security of foreigners and diplomatic missions in the country, according to a spokesman of the Russian Premier.

"It is important to note, that Vladimir Putin talks to Otunbayeva in her capacity as the head of the government of popular trust," said spokesman Dmitry Peskov.

According to him, Otunbayeva briefed Putin on the complex situation prevailing in the country and the need for economic assistance to which the Russian premier responded in affirmative.

"As the two countries have special relations, Russia always rendered and is ready to render necessary humanitarian assistance to the people of Kyrgyzstan," Peskov quoted Putin as saying to the interim Kyrgyz Premier.

“Many political experts in Bishkek believe Moscow is punishing (Kyrgyzstan President Kurmanbek) Bakiyev for his administration’s failure to evict American forces from the Manas air base,” the EurasiaNet Web site reported following the tariff hike.

Earlier, an opposition coalition led by Otunbayeva said it has formed an interim government that would rule the turbulent nation for six months.

Russia dispatches 150 paratroopers to Kyrgyzstan

Amidst continued violence and
takeover of power by an opposition-led interim government in
Kyrgyzstan, Russia today dispatched 150 paratroopers to
protect its Kant airbase in that country.

"About 150 paratroopers have left today from an
airfield near Moscow on board an air force IL-76 aircraft.
They armed only with various firearms, including automatic
rifles, machine guns, and sniper rifles.

They have been assigned the task of protecting the
aircraft, personnel and their families stationed at Russian
airbase in Kant," an unnamed officer of the General Staff was
quoted as saying by ITAR-TASS.

Kant airbase is located 20-km from Kyrgyzstan`s
capital Bishkek and is part of the Russia-led Collective
Security Pact Organisation`s military force.

Earlier in the day, the opposition alliance headed by
former foreign minister Roza Otunbayeva formed an interim
government in the central Asian country, dissolving parliament
and asked the toppled President Kurmanbek Bakiyev to quit.

Notably, Russia was the first country which announced
support for the new regime with Prime Minister Vladmir Putin
spoke to the interim leader and offered aid.

(With PTI inputs)



First Published: Thursday, April 8, 2010 - 20:12

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