Rights groups warn of Kyrgyz violence

LONDON, June 8 (UPI) -- Human rights groups Wednesday said failure to address issues remaining from last year's ethnic conflict in Kyrgyzstan could trigger renewed violence.

Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, in separate reports published Wednesday, expressed concern over Bishkek's ability to deliver justice in the aftermath of ethnic clashes following last year's coup.


A report by the international Kyrgyzstan Inquiry Commission said in addition to the 470 people killed in violence pitting the Kyrgyz community against ethnic Uzbeks, roughly 1,900 others were injured and more than 400,000 were displaced. Much of the violence occurred mostly during one week in June 2010.

Most of the victims were Uzbeks and the report highlighted an "unknown number" of women who were the victims of sexual violence.

Nicola Duckworth, director of the Europe and Central Asia program at Amnesty, praised Bishkek's response to the conflict but said more could be done.

"The failure to bring to justice those behind the violence could provide fertile soil for the seeds of future turmoil and future human rights violations," she said in a statement.

Human Rights Watch said Bishkek's investigation into the violence was marred by reports of torture, arbitrary arrests and "profoundly flawed investigations."


The watchdog group in March said refusal by Kyrgyz authorities to investigate claims of torture is a "serious violation" of law.

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