One year after the dreadful ethnic clashes in southern Kyrgyzstan: a retrospective in pictures

16/06/2011
Press release
en fr
Osh, Kyrgyzstan, July 2010

FIDH and Kyrgyz photographer Dmitri Mokhin present a series of pictures taken during the following days and weeks of the June 2010 events, when clashes between ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbeks broke out in south of the country. Within four days, violences resulted in the death of at least 470 people, mostly ethnic Uzbeks.

On June 10, 2010, after weeks of brewing tensions, clashes broke out between ethnic Uzbek and Kyrgyz youth groups in Osh, the second biggest city in Kyrgyzstan. The escalation of violence involved shootings, lootings, rapes, and the burning down of homes of ethnic Uzbeks. On June 12, the violence spread to the neighbouring city of Jalalabad [1].
The report of the International Independent Commission regarding the June 2010 events in Southern Kyrgyzstan, headed by Kimmo Kiljunen, found out that at least 470 people died, 74% of which were ethnic Uzbeks. 1,900 others were injured and more than 400,000 were displaced. Besides, the Commission pointed out that there was significant property damage, mostly affecting the Uzbek minority community, and qualified the violences committed in Osh on June 11, 12 and 13 as «crimes against humanity» [2].

{}

{}

Osh
{}
One week after the beginning of the clashes, the mahallas (Uzbek districts) were completely deserted : ethnic Uzbeks fled and left behind their homes and cars, which had been burned down and destroyed during the attacks. A few Kyrgyz possessions had been spared when they had the « KG » inscription, but some of them had also been damaged during the pogroms. Ethnic Uzbeks have set up flimsy tent camps among the wreckage, while commencing their search for dead family members. Some victims wrote "SOS" on walls and roads, to show their despair. To face this situation, worshippers have organised assistance, notably bringing clothes to a local Muslim temple. Before leaving, many Uzbeks began the hastily process of burrying their loved ones with a limited availability of gravestones, topping them with dishes in order to identify them.

{}

{}
Border
{}

From the very beginning of the clashes, hundreds of thousands of ethnic Uzbeks in Kyrgyzstan fled their homes and villages towards the border between Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan. Men, women and children piled together at this border for several days and weeks.
While relatives living in Uzbekistan managed to provide the refugees with bags of bare necessities, such as clothes and food, children made posters calling on the UN to help them.
Nearby, doctors attempted to supply medical assistance to the steady-stream of refugees accumulating the border.

{}

{}
Jalalabad region
{}
In Bazar-Korgon, in the Jalalabad region, one can only imagine the extent of the damages to the valuables and homes of the ethnic Uzbeks as a result of the pogroms. In a landscape of desolation, a woman puts a makeshift wall up to protect herself from possible new attacks. At the same time, dozens of women gather in Suzak and call on for the prosecutors of the massacre to be brought before the courts. The husband of one of them was arrested as he was suspected of having taken part in the unrest of June, 2010. The demonstration was dispersed by the security forces.
{}

Read more
communique