La Cina appoggia Karimov, divergendo dagli Usa sulla repressione

<105045897"> Cina, Centro Asia, Uzbekistan, Usa NYT 05-05-25

<105045898"> La Cina appoggia Karimov, divergendo dagli Usa sulla repressione

<105045899"> Il governo cinese: «Appoggiamo decisamente la repressione del governo uzbeko contro le forze separatiste, terroriste e estremiste».

C. J. Chivers – Yola Monakhov ha contribuito da Andijan

Il presidente uzbeko Karimov sta per incontrare le autorità cinesi.

La dichiarazione del governo cinese conferma una decisa frattura tra l’Occidente e Russia e Cina dall’altra nell’atteggiamento verso le autorità uzbeke, che hanno causato centinaia di vittime (400 o più; 745 secondo la leader del Partito dei contadini liberi) nella repressione delle manifestazioni di protesta.

Karimov è stato corteggiato negli ultimi anni sia da Washington che da Pechino e Mosca. NYT 05-05-25

China Backs Uzbek, Splitting With U.S. on Crackdown

By C. J. Chivers – Yola Monakhov contributed reporting from Andijon for this article

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan, May 24 – The government of China offered unequivocal support on Tuesday for President Islam A. Karimov of Uzbekistan, who is facing international criticism for the crackdown against a prison break and antigovernment rally in the northeastern city of Andijon earlier this month.

The support came amid fresh signs that the scale of violence exceeded what the Uzbek authorities have described, and as residents of Andijon and rights groups warned that roundups had begun inside Uzbekistan in an effort to squelch dissent.

With essential facts about the violence still in dispute, China made clear that it would stand beside the authoritarian government of Mr. Karimov, who was to begin a three-day visit with Chinese leaders on Wednesday.

“We firmly support the crackdown on the three forces of separatism, terrorism and extremism by the Uzbekistan government,” a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman , Kong Quan, said at a news conference in Beijing, according to news agency reports.

Mr. Kong’s statement cemented a stark split between the West on the one hand, and Russia and China on the other, over the behavior of the Uzbek authorities , who have been accused of firing indiscriminately into antigovernment crowds on May 13, possibly killing hundreds. Several Western governments, NATO and the European Union have called for an independent investigation.

Mr. Karimov, who has been courted simultaneously in recent years by Washington, Beijing and Moscow, has said Uzbekistan will not cooperate with any investigation. But even as China expressed its solidarity, new details from inside Andijon provided insight into the scale of killing and Uzbek efforts to prevent independent information from reaching the public.

A photographer working for The New York Times in Andijon photographed fresh, hastily dug graves at the city’s northern edge. Residents suggested the graves – the photographer estimated there were more than 40 – were used to store unclaimed bodies. The area around the graves was littered with soiled latex gloves; members of one family said they had dug up the decomposing remains of a relative from one of the holes.

The Associated Press reported that Gulbakhor Turayeva, a doctor who is now a rights activist, said that soon after the violence she had counted about 400 bodies at a morgue in a school on Chulpon Prospect in Andijon, which survivors have said was the area of the most intense shooting. Ms. Turayeva said there were perhaps 100 more bodies, but she was forced away by the authorities before completing her count.

The A. P. also reported that a correspondent surveying cemeteries was threatened by a plainclothes security officer who took away his notes.

Uzbekistan has said 169 people died, including 32 government troops. Survivors, opposition leaders and rights organizations say the death toll is at least several hundred, though they have not yet accumulated incontrovertible evidence to support these claims.

Nigara Khidoyatova, leader of the Free Peasants Party , for example, has said she knows of 745 victims. But she has not provided a list to journalists, who have been seeking it for days.

Residents who have seen bodies returned to families said toe tags and certificates that accompany them have been numbered from the teens to more than 400, and say the government has tried to retrieve them. The photographer working for The Times has seen two certificates, with the numbers 284 and 378, but it is not clear whether they refer to the same incident, or are a continuation of a count over a longer period.

One Andijon resident who visited the morgue to look for a missing relative, and pleaded with the photographer not to be identified, citing fears for his safety, said he had seen photographs of bodies beginning at numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, and continuing, with gaps, into the 400’s. “They had terrible photos,” the man said. “No eye, half a head. After I saw these pictures, I couldn’t sleep that night and haven’t slept since.” The man’s account could not be independently confirmed.

Andijon remained essentially a closed city and many residents were fearful. One family reported that the father had been taken away by security officers in black ski masks. Human Rights Watch, the New York-based group, expressed concern about Saidjahon Zainabitdinov, a rights worker in Andijon who has been detained. The group said it feared that Mr. Zainabitdinov had been a victim of an organized effort to silence critics and witnesses of the crackdown. He was arrested Sunday.

Allison Gill, an Uzbekistan researcher for Human Rights Watch, said in a telephone interview that she feared that Mr. Zainabitdinov was being tortured, and that a case was being rigged against him.

Copyright 2005 The New York Times

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