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Turkish President Urges Kyrgyzstan To Help Stabilize Afghanistan

Turkish President Abdullah Gul addresses the Kyrgyz parliament

Turkish President Abdullah Gul addresses the Kyrgyz parliament

BISHKEK (RFE/RL) -- Turkish President Abdullah Gul called on Kyrgyzstan to actively participate in helping stabilize Afghanistan, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

Speaking to the Kyrgyz parliament on May 28 before leaving for Tajikistan, Gul said that Turkey is supporting the international efforts to stabilize the situation in Afghanistan and wants to see Kyrgyzstan participate since Afghan security would benefit Central Asia as a whole.

Two months ago Kyrgyzstan renounced agreements on the U.S. air base at Manas International Airport near Bishkek, which NATO forces used to supply their operations in Afghanistan.

Kyrgyz parliament deputy Roza Otunbaeva told RFE/RL that since Turkey is a NATO member and one of the closest U.S. allies, Gul's message can be interpreted as supporting U.S. operations in Afghanistan and urging Bishkek to allow U.S. forces to stay at Manas.