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Kyrgyz leader complains of US 'provocation' over rights award

Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev scrapped a cooperation deal with the US after Washington awarded a rights prize to jailed ethnic minority campaigner Azimjon AskarovCholpon-Ata (Kyrgyzstan) (AFP) – Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev on Monday defended his decision to tear up a long-running cooperation deal with the US, calling Washington’s decision to give an award to a jailed rights activist “a provocation”. Ex-Soviet Kyrgyzstan, which has pursued a strongly pro-Russian foreign policy since Atambayev was elected in 2011, last week nixed a deal with the US dating back to 1993 after Washington awarded a rights prize to a jailed ethnic minority campaigner.

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