Refugee crisis in Uzbekistan

June 16, 2010
At least 100,000 people have now been admitted into Uzbekistan after violent fighting in neighboring Kyrgyzstan took hundreds of lives in the city of Osh
At least 100,000 people have now been admitted into Uzbekistan after violent fighting in neighboring Kyrgyzstan took hundreds of lives in the city of Osh

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AP Photo / Faruk Akkan
An ethnic Uzbek refugee holds a boy in a newly set-up refugee camp near the eastern Uzbek city of Andijon while waiting to cross the border into Uzbekistan, Monday, June 14, 2010. Thousands of refugees have fled the pogrom that began last week in southern Kyrgyzstan.

At least 100,000 people have now been admitted into Uzbekistan after violent fighting in neighboring Kyrgyzstan took hundreds of lives.

UNICEF Representative in Uzbekistan Jean-Michel Delmotte described a chaotic situation in recent days, as thousands of ethnic Uzbeks, mostly women and children, clamored to get into the country.

Now, about 50 makeshift camps for the refugees have been set up in eastern Uzbekistan, many in overcrowded school facilities. UNICEf has been admitted to observe the conditions in the camp and the situation on the border. The refugees are being registered and provided with hot meals, but Delmotte says there is a real need for more water and sanitation facilities.

Meanwhile, seven UNICEF trucks carrying emergency supplies were on their way to eastern Uzbekistan to provide refugees with tents, clothes, blankets, health kits and kitchen sets. Valued at $100,000, the supplies are an initial response.