Monday, November 23, 2009

Uzbekistan closes border with Kazakhstan due to swine flu 11/23/09 9:30am

Uzbekistan closes border with Kazakhstan due to swine flu

Very short article, considering there has been no news about this previously - Closing the Border is extreme. I will see what I can find.


The Kazakhstan Foreign Ministry announced Monday that Uzbekistan had closed their shared border.

The closure is apparently in response to high rates of infection of the H1N1 virus, also known as the swine flu.

UPDATE 11/23/09 9:45

Another article about it:

ASTANA (Reuters) -- Uzbekistan has closed its border with Central Asian neighbor Kazakhstan to all but citizens of each nation returning home, the Kazakh Foreign Ministry said today, as swine flu spreads in both countries.

Kazakh media and residents of the Uzbek capital, Tashkent, have connected the move to fears about an outbreak of the H1N1 flu virus, but this has not been confirmed by the authorities there.

The World Health Organization (WHO) reported on November 20 that Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and parts of Afghanistan were reporting higher numbers of flu cases.

"The initiative did not come from the Kazakh side," Kazakh Foreign Ministry spokesman Yerzhan Ashykbayev told a briefing. "There is no official information on the reasons behind this decisions."

Uzbekistan's Foreign Ministry could not be reached for comment.

Tashkent regularly closes its borders with its other neighbors Afghanistan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan for security reasons before national holidays such as the Constitution Day, marked on December 8.

Parliamentary elections are also due in Uzbekistan next month.

My note*
I have got to say, It sure does seem like all the closing of borders and Swine flu/plague/disease outbreak areas all have some Big Political elections coming up! (2+2 = keeping in control and power?)