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Kyrgyzstan Forms New Company To Provide U.S. Transit Center With Fuel

U.S. soldiers board a plane to Afghanistan from the Manas air base.
BISHKEK -- A new state company that will provide 50 percent of all fuel needed by the U.S. transit center at Manas airport near Bishkek was officially launched today, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

First Deputy Prime Minister Amangeldy Muraliev and officials from the U.S. and Russian embassies were present at the launch ceremony.

The U.S. transit center at Manas, a key hub for supporting U.S. military efforts in Afghanistan, currently obtains all its fuel from Mina Corp., which is registered in Gibraltar.

Kyrgyz President Roza Otunbaeva harshly criticized the Pentagon's recent decision to renew its contract with Mina Corp.

She claimed that over the past five years, the company has violated Kyrgyz regulations and may have been involved in corrupt schemes to enrich her predecessor as president, Kurmanbek Bakiev.

Read more in Kyrgyz