Russia’s President Dmitry Medvedev has issued a stark warning that Kyrgystan is on the brink of civil war and could become a “second Afghanistan”.
His words come as Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev hinted he could leave the country if his and his family’s safety was guaranteed.
Since fleeing the capital Bishkek to Jalal-Abad, Bakiyev has been warning of a blood bath. He has refused to resign and has tried to rally supporters in his southern stronghold.
President Medvedev – addressing a think tank in Washington where he is attending the global nuclear security summit - said there was real danger Kyrgyzstan could split in two as tensions persist after last week’s uprising.
“We ourselves understand perfectly what a civil war means, he said. “Today, God forbid, if it has started it immediately attracts extremists and terrorists of all kinds, because, in the course of such conflicts, the best possible conditions are created for radical movements.”
As the Kyrygz people clear up after the riots that led to the installation of an interim government President Medvedev urged Bakiyev to formally step down, in order to defuse the crisis.
Kyrgyzstan could become 'second Afghanistan'