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U.S. Soldier Still Under Investigation Over Kyrgyz Killing

Soldiers at the U.S. facility at Manas (file photo) (USDoD) May 3, 2007 -- A U.S. serviceman who shot a truck driver dead at a checkpoint has been sent home despite official demands that he be handed over for criminal prosecution.

But U.S. Ambassador in Bishkek Marie Yovanovitch said today that the serviceman, Zachary Hatfield, remains under investigation in connection with the incident.

Hatfield shot airport employee Aleksandr Ivanov as he approached a U.S. facility at Kyrgyzstan's Manas Airport in December.

A Kyrgyz inquiry reportedly concluded that Hatfield committed a crime.

U.S. officials have said Hatfield shot Ivanov in self-defense after he saw him with a knife in his hand near a section of the airport reserved for U.S. and coalition personnel.

U.S. service personnel at the base possess diplomatic immunity on the basis of a bilateral agreement.


Turmoil In Kyrgyzstan

Turmoil In Kyrgyzstan

Opposition protests in Bishkek on April 11 (TASS)

TAKING TO THE STREETS. Edil Baisalov, president of the largest grassroots network in Kyrgyzstan, discussed the political turmoil in Kyrgyzstan at an RFE/RL briefing in Washington. He addressed the question of whether the unrest is a healthy democratic process or a bid to derail the country's fragile democratic transition.


Listen to the entire briefing (about 70 minutes):
Real Audio Windows Media


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RFE/RL's coverage of Kyrgyzstan. The Kyrgyz-language website of RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service.


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