Situation improving in Kyrgyzstan: UN
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Last Updated: Saturday, June 26, 2010, 13:55
United Nations: The United Nations has said that the situation in the ethnic riot-hit southern Kyrgyzstan has improved but security concerns are still preventing humanitarian workers from reaching everyone.

"The situation in Osh has improved with many small shops and banks opening up, with traffic in circulation and with farmers from neighbouring provinces bringing in products," said Martin Nesirky, UN spokesperson.

"However, food, shelter, non-food items and hygiene kits remain important needs," he told journalists.

"It is essential that, where people are returning, they are able to do so safely, voluntarily and in a sustainable manner," Nesirky said.

"We also urge that returns should happen foremost to areas that humanitarian agencies have access to," he added.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said that humanitarian workers were finding it difficult to reach all of those in need due to security concerns.

The clashes that erupted in Osh and Jalabad regions between ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbek groups have so far claimed the lives of hundreds of people and thousands have been injured.

The UN refugee agency, UNHCR, has determined that 300,000 people are internally displaced due to the ethnic violence, and an estimated 100,000 have fled to neighbouring Uzbekistan.

The UN has launched a flash appeal for USD 71 million dollars for the thousands of people impacted by the ethnic violence that broke out in southern Kyrgyzstan on June 10.

The UNHCR now finds that there are mass returns from Uzbekistan and according to the Kyrgyz authorities, 70,000 refugees have returned so far.

UNHCR noted that both refugees and internally displaced persons had expressed mixed feelings about going back they wanted to be reunited with their families but they were also worried about their safety.

Ban's Special Representative for the region, Miroslav Jenca, noted that there were ongoing consultations with the Kyrgyzstan government on establishing an international presence in the country.

In Geneva, the UN Human Rights Council passed a resolution that called on the Kyrgyzstan government to organise a probe into the violence.


First Published: Saturday, June 26, 2010, 13:55

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