Saturday, April 10, 2010

Russia's role in Kyrgyzstan overthrow


Evidence of Russia's role in the overthrow of the Kyrgyz government Wednesday became even clearer Thursday. Not coincidentally, members of the interim government that the opposition began forming on Wednesday have lengthy and deep ties to Russia. Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin was not only quick to endorse the new government, but he also offered the opposition Russia’s support — financial or otherwise. Interestingly, Russia on Thursday also sent 150 of its elite paratroopers to its military installation in Kant -– twenty miles from the capital of Bishkek –- leaving a looming suspicion that Russia could step in further to ensure the success of the new government.

Protests take place regularly in Kyrgyzstan. The fact that Wednesday’s protests spun into riots, followed by the seizure then ousting of the government, followed by the installation of a replacement government set to take control — all in less than a 24-hour period — are all clear indicators that this was a highly organized series of events, likely orchestrated from outside the country.

More coverage:

Blood in the Streets of Bishkek (Foreign Policy)
US, Russia considering cooperation on Kyrgyzstan (Associated Press) — Not that the U.S. can do much, even with an airbase in the country -ed
US suspends Kyrgyzstan-Afghanistan troop flights (BBC News)