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Mauro: Russian Coup in Kyrgyzstan?

Posted on April 12 2010 11:23 am
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by Ryan Mauro

Kyrgyzstan just added another chapter in its history of revolutions. The government of Kurmanbek Bakiyev, which has hosted a critical U.S. air base since 2001, has been overthrown by pro-Russian forces opposed to that presence. Russia has a legacy of manipulating internal strife among its neighbors, and this latest event is no exception.

Vladimir Putin has adamantly denied any Russian involvement in the overthrow of Bakiyev, but at least one of the new rulers of Kyrgyzstan says something different. Omurbek Tekebayev, who is in charge of writing the new constitution, has openly stated that “Russia played its role in ousting Bakiyev.” He says this as if it is common knowledge, obvious to any observer.

“You’ve seen the level of Russia’s joy when they saw Bakiyev gone. So now there is a high probability that the duration of the U.S. air base’s presence in Kyrgyzstan will be shortened,” he said on April 9.

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