Kyrgyz foreign minister Roza Otunbaeva yesterday called on the U.S. and other Western countries to "pay much closer attention" to the Tajikistan conflict and contribute to its political settlement, rather than leaving it "only to Russia and the CIS." Absent a U.S. role "one can scarcely hope for an early resolution of this conflict," Otunbaeva said. She also described the Tajik armed opposition’s recent actions in Tavildara as "nothing extraordinary" and predictable for this time of the year. (Interfax, June 13) Otunbaeva has previously called for greater international involvement in Central Asian security arrangements in general to balance Russian influence.
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