Accessibility links

Breaking News

Uzbek Refugees Depart Kyrgyzstan For Third Countries

Uzbek refugees crossing into Kyrgyzstan in May 2005 (epa) February 21, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- A number of Uzbek refugees who fled the violence in Andijon in May 2005 have been relocated to third countries, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reported.

Nineteen Uzbek refugees have left Kyrgyzstan bound, reportedly, for destinations in the United States, Canada, and Austria.

Cholpon Jakupova, the head the Kyrgyz nongovernmental organization Adilet said Kyrgyzstan could not guarantee the safety of all the Uzbeks who came to Kyrgyzstan after the Andijon violence.

"In the current situation we cannot provide safety for these people on the territory of Kyrgyzstan," Jakupova said. "Starting in May 2005 when they came to our country, for various reasons that unfortunately remain unknown, some 17 people disappeared from Kyrgyzstan, and no one knows the fate of these people."

On May 13, 2005, a demonstration in Andijon turned violent when escaped armed prisoners joined demonstrators and seized several administrative buildings and local officials. Uzbek authorities sent troops to restore order.

The troops fired on the crowd and, according to the Uzbek government, 187 people were killed. Witnesses and international rights organizations say the figure was much higher.

The violence in Andijon sent hundreds of people fleeing across the nearby border into Kyrgyzstan. The Uzbek government has been pressuring Kyrgyz authorities to return them.

Aftermath Of Andijon

Aftermath Of Andijon

A dedicated webpage bringing together all of RFE/RL's coverage of the events in Andijon, Uzbekistan, in May 2005 and their continuing repercussions.


An annotated timeline of the Andijon events and their repercussions.

RFE/RL has been declared an "undesirable organization" by the Russian government.

If you are in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine and hold a Russian passport or are a stateless person residing permanently in Russia or the Russia-controlled parts of Ukraine, please note that you could face fines or imprisonment for sharing, liking, commenting on, or saving our content, or for contacting us.

To find out more, click here.