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China To DNA-Test Remains Found After Deadly Kyrgyz Clashes

A woman searches for usable objects in a house burnt down during ethnic clashes in the city of Osh in June 2010.
BISHKEK – The human remains found after last year's ethnic clashes in southern Kyrgyzstan will be identified in China, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

On March 29, Kyrgyz Health Minister Sabyrbek Jumabekov told the relatives of the men and women missing since the mid-June clashes that the unidentified human remains will go thorough DNA tests there.

The Kyrgyz Health Ministry's press service told RFE/RL that Chinese authorities agreed to assist Kyrgyzstan in identifying the remains.

Relatives of those missing after the clashes between ethnic Uzbeks and Kyrgyz in the southern regions of Osh and Jalal-Abad last year have been demanding that the government identify the remains as soon as possible.

But Kyrgyz authorities are not able to conduct DNA tests to identify the remains due to the lack of labs in the country.

The exact number of those missing has never been made public.

More than 400 people died in the clashes. Of those, 23 bodies initially could not be identified.

Russia helped to identify three bodies, leaving 20 more requiring identification.

At the March 29 meeting in Bishkek, the relatives of the missing individuals also told Jumabekov and parliament speaker Akmatbek Keldibekov that all those who died in the ethnic clashes should be posthumously given the "Hero of Kyrgyzstan" award and their families should be compensated.

Keldibekov told relatives that President Roza Otunbaeva and the parliament would take care of their demands.

Read more in Kyrgyz here