Kyrgyz President: U.S. Air Base Should Not Be Used Against Iran

In-depth Report:

Azerbaijan, Baku, Feb. 25 – Trend – The U.S. air base located in the Kyrgyz “Manas” airport should not be used against Iran, Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambaev said.

“The base in Kyrgyzstan should not be used against Iran. That is why we are talking about the necessity to withdraw foreign troops from the civil airport after 2014 and close the base,” Atambaev said in an interview with Voice of Russia radio station.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich said that the Ministry fears that the Manas air base can be used in the potential conflict with Iran.

Air base at Manas which was later renamed as the Transit Centre was opened in late 2001 after the U.S launched its operation in Afghanistan. At present, it accommodates about 1,200 U.S soldiers. According to Pentagon statistics, the base handles up to 15,000 coalition servicemen and 500 tons of cargoes a month. The agreement on deployment of the U.S. air base in Kyrgyzstan is valid until 2014.

Atambayev said that the decision on the withdrawal of foreign troops and military bases from civilian airport is provoked by considerations of Kyrgyz capital and civil population

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Articles by: E. Kosolapova

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