Kyrgyzstan + 2 more

International land-mine conference looks at Kyrgyzstan's mine problems as Tajik youth, his father are killed by landmines on Uzbek border

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An international conference in Bishkek on 5 November examined Kyrgyzstan's problems with antipersonnel mines planted along its border by the Uzbek armed forces, Kyrgyzinfo and RIA-Novosti reported. However, a representative of the Kyrgyz Foreign Ministry said Kyrgyzstan does not intend to sign the Ottawa Convention on antipersonnel land mines. Since 2000, five Kyrgyz citizens have been killed by Uzbek mines. The conference on land mines in Central Asia and the CIS was organized by the international NGO Doctors Against Nuclear War, and was attended by NGO activists from several CIS states, the United States, France, and Australia and by representatives of the UN Development Program, the OSCE, and the International Committee of the Red Cross, all of which are supporting land-mine-removal activity in Central Asia. BB
A 15-year-old Tajik boy was killed and three others were injured when they stepped on a land mine on the Uzbek side of the Tajik-Uzbek border on 4 November, Kyrgyzinfo reported on 6 November, quoting the northern Tajik news agency Varorud. When the father of the dead youth learned what had happened, he rushed to the spot and was also killed by a land mine. A police official in the Isfara Raion of Sughd Oblast, where the tragedy occurred, said it was difficult to retrieve the bodies because of the minefield. Police officials were joined at the scene by representatives of the recently opened Tajik Center for Land Mine Problems. BB
Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty
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