WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Benjamin L. Cardin (D-MD), Chairman of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (U.S. Helsinki Commission) and Co-Chairman Congressman Alcee L. Hastings (D-FL) welcomed Thursday the peaceful departure of Kurmanbek Bakiev from the Republic of Kyrgyzstan.
“I hope that Kurmanbek Bakiev’s departure from Kyrgyzstan will serve as a further step towards a peaceful resolution of the situation,” Chairman Cardin said. “The Kazakhstani Chairmanship of the OSCE has been vital in resolving this crisis. The Chairman-in-Office deserves great credit for continuing dialogue surrounding these events, which has had significant results, including Bakiev leaving the country.”
“I hope Bakiev’s departure will help the provisional government to establish legitimacy within the rule of law,” Co-Chairman Hastings said. “Leaders of the provisional government now have the opportunity to build democracy and respect for human rights. We hope they will move forward transparently and with the participation of civil society, and we look forward to working with them and the people of Kyrgyzstan towards that end.”
“The fact all flights resumed today at Manas Transit Center is a sign of stabilization in Kyrgyzstan. The importance of U.S. engagement there goes beyond Manas, although the airport remains important to transporting U.S. military equipment and personnel to Afghanistan,” Cardin added. “Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s dispatching of Assistant Secretary Robert O. Blake Jr. to the country this week for meetings with provisional government leaders further demonstrates the significance of U.S. engagement during this period.”