Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon conferred with the chair of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) on the mounting tensions in Kyrgyzstan, as the United Nations assesses humanitarian aid needs arising from the violence that has reportedly claimed nearly 100 lives.
According to media reports, violence is spreading in southern Kyrgyzstan on the third day of ethnic fighting between Kyrgyz and Uzbeks which has also led to the wounding of several hundred.
During a phone call on Saturday with Foreign Minister Kanat Sauabayev of Kazakhstan, the Chairman-in-Office of the OSCE, Mr. Ban said he was alarmed by the scale of the clashes, the inter-ethnic nature of the violence, the mounting casualties and the large number of displaced people.
The Secretary-General said the UN was urgently assessing humanitarian aid needs resulting from the clashes, the latest unrest to hit the Central Asian nation after the violent uprising in April that ousted former president Kurmanbek Bakiyev.
Miroslav Jenca, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and head of the Regional Centre for Preventive Diplomacy for Central Asia (UNRCCA), was in the southern city of Osh last Sunday and is continuing his efforts to ensure the peace and stability of Kyrgyzstan.
Mr. Ban and the OSCE official agreed their respective special envoys and that of the European Union would coordinate their response to the crisis, according to information released by the Secretary-General`s spokesperson.
The three envoys are either ready in the Kyrgyz capital, Bishkek, or on their way, the spokesperson added.