Wanted: OSCE Leadership in Kyrgyzstan

Wall Street Journal Asia, by Sam Patten

If April's violent regime change in Kyrgyzstan suggested international assistance is needed, the recent bloodshed in the country's south confirmed it. Regional powers as well as the United States have an interest in ensuring the ethnic violence does not recur. But local leadership offers the best chance of enlisting the help needed. Neighboring Kazakhstan has an opportunity to use its chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to find a constructive solution.

Events over the past week showed how tenuous Kyrgyzstan's security truly is. If just 500 marauding bandits, some in Kyrgyz military uniforms, are really to blame for the ethnic cleansing of Uzbeks, the inability of the interim government to prevent the atrocities is deeply worrying. It is particularly disturbing that plans to hold a referendum on a new constitution this Sunday are still going ahead, despite the lack of security. Read more.

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