In Bishkek the capital of Kyrgyz Republic on the central square stands monument which symbolizes Liberty / “Erkendic” it was set in 1999 in stead of Lenin monument. Monument is 12 meters height. There is a woman who is handling “tunduk” ,it symbolizes Kyrgyz government. (“tunduk” it is the top of “yurt”, “yurt” is the Kyrgyz self made house, like tent which is made of wood and wool) . I can suppose that this monument is the Kyrgyz variant of “Liberty Statue” in USA. Although, some representatives’ from political parties made tries to destroy it because they dont want to associate their power, government of Kyrgyzstan with woman. They listed some reasons; The hairdo of monuments woman is the same as the temporary head of government has (Otumbaeva) Also, there is kyrgyz superstitious saying “ wish your wife rise up “tunduk” it means unhappiness and disaster. So, you can see how the male part of politicians “ ready” for giving access to women politicians  They trying to find reasons and excuses to justify their mistakes. I don’t believe that statue influences on situation in government , people do that. Any way, combination of all listed reasons and political PR game doesn’t give them right to take away our choice.

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Svetlana, I am writing as we are reading about the violence in SE Kyrgyzstan and that bands of ethnic Kyrgyz were seeking out Uzbeks, setting fire to their homes and killing them. We would love to hear from someone in Kyrgyzstan to know what the real story is and what we can do to help. Reports are that the Kyrgyz provisional government has asked Russia to send in peacekeeping troops, but it is unclear as to whether they will do so.

I am sure the situation is causing much anxiety for the Kyrgyz people and it would be helpful if we heard from someone on the ground who has a deeper understanding of the violence and the motivation behind it. Also, what are your thoughts on what our community can do to facilitate any action you believe might help bring peace to your region.

Please let us know if there is anything we can do to assist you. In solidarity, Janice