May 11, 2001 -- An international media-rights watchdog today urged the European Union to maintain sanctions it imposed against Uzbekistan after the Uzbek government's bloody crackdown on a 2005 uprising.
The appeal by Reporters Without Borders comes just days before the second anniversary of the May 13 violence in Andijon.
The Paris-based group said Europe should not sacrifice the defense of human rights for the sake of gaining access to energy resources in Uzbekistan.
The European Council is to review the sanctions on May 14.
Uzbek refugees in Kyrgyzstan on May 19, 2005 (epa)
NO PLACE TO GO: More than 400 Uzbeks who fled in panic in the hours and days after troops opened fire on demonstrators in Andijon one year ago have been granted political asylum outside Central Asia. In limbo for weeks in Kyrgyzstan as they and the world tried to come to grips with the bloody events of May 12 and 13, they feared for their lives and the lives of family members as the official crackdown continued.... (more)