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The Hellenic Radio (ERA): News in English, 10-06-17
From: The Hellenic Radio (ERA) <www.ert.gr/>
 17 Killed in Clashes in KyrgyzstanFriday, 11 June 2010 09:05
Kyrgyzstan's interim government declared a state of emergency and slapped a curfew on southern parts of the country Friday after ethnic clashes left at least 17 people dead and around 200 wounded.
The provisional government, which has struggled to assert order over the ex-Soviet state since taking power amid unrest earlier this year, insisted that while the situation remained volatile, government forces were in control.
"Shooting has stopped across the whole city and the situation is under the control of law enforcement agencies," interior ministry spokesman Rakhmatillo Akhmedov said in an interview on national radio.
But witnesses reached in Kyrgyzstan's southern capital Osh by telephone described a chaotic scene, with gunfire ringing out well into the morning and heavily armed helicopters swooping low over the centre of the city.
Andrea Berg, Central Asia researcher at New York-based watchdog Human Rights Watch, told AFP by phone from the city that she had been trapped inside her guest house since the fighting erupted.
"I can't leave the city. There are no flights, no cars, no public transport whatsoever. There is still shooting going on. While I'm talking to you I hear shooting and it's really not far away," she said.
Witnesses said brawls had broken out overnight between ethnic Kyrgyz and ethnic Uzbek groups in the southern city, once the stronghold of former president Kurmanbek Bakiyev, who was overthrown in April.
Buildings and cars were set alight and shop windows smashed across Osh, Kyrgyzstan's second largest city, as groups of armed men battled in the streets with guns and improvised weapons.
The leaders of Russia and China called for calm in Kyrgyzstan as growing unrest there topped talks at a regional security summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in neighbouring Uzbekistan.
"We sincerely hope that this phase of internal turmoil is overcome as soon as possible," Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said at the meeting of the China and Russia-led group.
"China and other neighbours will continue to offer Kyrgyzstan all possible help," Chinese President Hu Jintao said through a Russian translator. "We sincerely hope that there will be a swift stabilisation of the situation."
Source: AFP News item: 37534
 Flash Floods Kill 20 in FranceThursday, 17 June 2010 08:45
Some 20 people have died after torrential rain hit parts of south-eastern France. All victims were from the worst affected department of Var. Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux said devastation in the region is unprecedented adding he feared the death toll would go higher as number of confirmed casualties continued to creep up.
One day after flash floods people see extent of destruction
The sudden downpours late on Wednesday badly affected southeastern France, submerging streets, flooding hundreds of houses, sweeping away cars and leaving more than 200.000 households without electricity.
The worst, however, was reserved for Draguignan, where the water reached two metres in the streets forcing people to take refuge on the roofs of their houses. Local official Corinne Orzechowski spoke of a devastated town centre, extremely battered, with car wrecks in the streets, roads that have fallen in, houses ripped open, infrastructure damaged. The majority of casualties are thought to have died while trapped in their cars as it happened the worst moment when people were returning home from their works. Some 2.000 rescuers are taking part in rescue operation.
Hundreds were transferred to hospitals in state of panic. MeteorologistsÚ said rain that usuallyfalls in six months fell in 24 hours.
Source: AFP - LE Monde, Figaro
News item: 37752