Bishek, 6 September 2000 (RFE/RL) - The interior ministers of 12 former Soviet states are meeting in Kyrgyzstan today to discuss a joint program to combat terrorism amid a series of Islamic incursions across Central Asia. A Kyrgyz official said the CIS ministers will exchange opinions on a program for combating international terrorism from 2000-2003.
The CIS comprises all the countries of the former Soviet Union apart from the three Baltic republics.
The ministers are expected to sign agreements on cooperation to counter terrorism and the repatriation of juvenile criminals during three days of talks in the Cholpon-Ata resort in Kyrgyzstan.
The meeting convened against a backdrop of incursions into southern Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan by some 200 Muslim insurgents who are seeking to create an Islamic state in Central Asia's Ferghana Valley.