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Kyrgyz NGOs To Hold Protest Against Customs Union

Nongovernmental organizations in Kyrgyzstan say they plan to hold a protest against the country joining a Russia-led Customs Union.

Leaders of the Kyrgyzstan Against Customs Union movement and representatives of the Reforma and Democratic Alliance parties told journalists in Bishkek on May 2 that the public protest will be held in Bishkek on May 5.

They say Kyrgyzstan will lose its independence and sovereignty by joining the Customs Union.

Kyrgyz Prime Minister Joomart Otorbaev said in Moscow on April 30 that the road map for Kyrgyzstan joining the Customs Union has been "practically accomplished" and will be approved soon by the union's member states -- Russia, Kazakhstan, and Belarus.

Moscow has tried to get other former Soviet republics to join the union, saying that by 2015 it will become the Eurasian Economic Union and be modeled after the EU.

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

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