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Situation in S. Kyrgyzstan 'under control'

RIA Novosti

14:38 17/06/2010

BISHKEK, June 17 (RIA Novosti) - The situation in the Kyrgyz city of Osh, the scene of mass interethnic clashes, has been taken under control, a deputy interim prime minister said on Thursday.

The deadly clashes between ethnic Kyrgyz and Uzbek groups in southern Kyrgyzstan broke out in Osh on June 11 and then spread to the neighboring Jalalabad region, leaving at least 191 dead and over 2,000 injured according to official figures.

Azimbek Beknazarov said the city was returning to normal although sporadic shooting had been heard on the city outskirts at night.

"There are enough [government] forces in the south," he said.

He said 15 people were missing as a result of the riots.

"Fifty-nine criminal cases have been opened and an interagency group has been set up to investigate the tragic events in the south," he said.

Beknazarov also said anti-government elements were seeking to destabilize the situation in the north of the country.

"There is a danger that they [organizers of the riots] will want to move to the north," he said.

He said over 110 people had been detained on suspicion of being involved in organizing the "acts of provocation" in Osh and Jalalabad.

He said followers of ousted President Kurmanbek Bakiyev were behind the riots.

Russia, Germany, China, Pakistan and other countries continue to send humanitarian aid to the Central Asian republic.

The United States expressed its concern over the situation in Kyrgyzstan and said on Wednesday it had committed over $32 million in response to the current humanitarian crisis in Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan.

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