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Security checkpoints at the Manas air base (ITAR-TASS)
May 24, 2007 -- Kyrgyzstan says it will not allow the United States to use its military base at Bishkek's Manas Airport to launch possible attacks inside Iraq or Iran.
Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev today said the military agreement with the United States over the air base is "tricky and almost impossible to cancel."
Kyrgyz parliamentarians have urged the government to evict the U.S. troops from the base.
Some 1,000 U.S. troops are stationed at the airbase, which was established 2001 to support the military campaign in Afghanistan.
A number of issues have marred Kyrgyz-U.S. relations over the base, including a shooting at the base in December 2006 that killed a Kyrgyz citizen, a collision that damaged a Kyrgyz aircraft, Kyrgyz complaints that the base damages the environment, and, most recently, suggestions that the base could be used to stage a military strike.