Kirghizia Has Coordinated Use Of Its Territory By U.s. Aviation With Cis Collective Security Treaty Partners

The matter of use of Kirghiz territory for the basing of American warplanes engaged in antiterrorist operations in Afghanistan has been coordinated by Kirghizia with its partners in the Collective Security Treaty of countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States -- Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Russia and Tajikistan. The RIA Novosti correspondent quotes Kirghiz President Askar Akaev as saying this on Thursday, appearing before deputies of the Legislative Assembly of Kirghiz parliament. The Kirghiz president reported that, at the past summit meeting of the CIS leaders in Moscow, he discussed the matter with all leaders of the Treaty's member countries and got their "backing and approval". In line with the agreements reached between Bishkek and Washington, American warplanes participating in the antiterrorist coalition's operations in Afghanistan will be located in the airport Manas of the Kirghiz capital. American servicemen in Bishkek will get the status of representatives of a diplomatic mission. In official statistics, Kirghizia offers the use of its territory to the American military for a year. The concluded bilateral agreement says that civilian aviation service in the airport Manas will not be suspended or reduced because of the placement of American air force equipment there. So far, representatives of Kirghizia's power structures are not reporting how many American warplanes will be deployed in Manas. This question will be, most probably, decided upon during the December 8 visit to Bishkek of US Secretary of State Colin Powell. Apart from the United States, Kirghizia has been asked to grant the use of its territory by military contingents of these members of the international antiterrorist coalition -- France, Italy, Canada, Australia and South Korea. No answer has yet been received.