Rebuilding Kyrgyzstan’s Southern Capital
Economic development in Osh seen as way of preventing future conflicts.
This is the third in a series of radio reports to mark the fifth anniversary of ethnic violence in southern Kyrgyzstan, in which more than 400 people died in a few days in June 2010.
Once order was restored, the authorities set about rebuilding properties in Osh and Jalalabad that had been attacked and torched, constructing new housing blocks, laying roads and installing electricity lines and other infrastructure.
“After these tragic events, the city [Osh] was restored and it began leading a normal life,” political analyst Igor Shestakov recalled in an interview for IWPR. “But of course, given the fact that the infrastructure of our southern capital had been in a fairly sorry state over a long period, it would be wrong to expect miracles or dramatic progress in the space of one, two or three years. But I think the most important thing is that a trend has been started for the national and local authorities to pay attention and see that Osh gets modern infrastructure.”
Shestakov sees the reduction in poverty levels that has taken place in recent years as crucial to long-term stability.
“The low standard of living is the cause of many of our conflicts. The more jobs there are, the fewer conflicts there will be,” he said.
Aytunuk Nurdinova is an IWPR contributor in Kyrgyzstan.
This audio programme went out in Russian and Kyrgyz on national radio stations in Kyrgyzstan. It was produced under two IWPR projects, Investigative Journalism to Promote Democratic Reform, funded by the European Union; and Strengthening Capacities, Bridging Divides in Central Asia, funded by the Foreign Ministry of Norway. The contents of this article are the sole responsibility of IWPR and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the EU or the Norwegian government.