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Ethnic Kyrgyz Group Illegally Seizes Land Near Osh


A group of ethnic Kyrgyz today occupied land belonging to ethnic Uzbeks in the villages of Kyzyl-Kyshtak and Ishkevan, just outside Osh, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

The group of some 500 Kyrgyz -- mainly from the city of Osh and the Nookat, Aravan, and Alai districts -- showed up in the villages in the morning with plans to divide the land into parcels.

District authorities have warned the land occupiers to vacate the area by November 8 or face "severe measures."

Violence broke out between ethnic Kyrgyz and Uzbeks in southern Kyrgyzstan in June, leaving more than 400 people dead and causing widespread destruction in the region.

Tensions remain high as courts are currently trying perpetrators of that violence, whom international rights organizations point out seem to be mainly ethnic Uzbeks.