Demonstrators in New York in May calling for an investigation into the Andijon unrest (RFE/RL)
August 10, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- A prominent U.S.-based rights group has criticized Kyrgyzstan for deporting five Uzbek nationals wanted in their home country for their alleged participation in last year’s unrest in Andijon.
Human Rights Watch says in a statement that the Kyrgyz decision violates international law and puts the lives and well being of the deportees at risk.
The five were sent back to Uzbekistan on August 9. They had been kept in custody in the southern city of Osh for months.
Among them are four UN-recognized refugees and one asylum seeker.
The office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that it was shocked by the decision.
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)