13:01 GMT +316 October 2018
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    TASHKENT SURPRISED BY STRAW'S COMMENTS ON ANDIZHAN

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    TASHKENT, May 15 (RIA Novosti) - In a letter to British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw, handed over to the UK Ambassador to Uzbekistan on Sunday, Tashkent expressed its "surprise" by Foreign Secretary's comments on the situation in the eastern Uzbek city of Andizhan recently shaken by mass protests. "Uzbekistan was surprised to hear that head of the UK Foreign Office Jack Straw was very well informed of the situation in Andizhan, though he was in fact thousands of miles away," the letter reads.

    "How did Mr. Jack Straw know that the police 'opened fire on protesters,' something that never took place? Maybe Mr. Straw should have analyzed what had really happened before coming up with such strong statements," the Uzbeks wrote.

    Meanwhile, the Uzbek foreign ministry has reaffirmed that the situation in Andizhan was "completely stable."

    "Everything that happened in Andizhan was fully and openly dwelt upon during a May 14 news conference given by the president of Uzbekistan," the foreign ministry says.

    On Saturday, Jack Straw, on behalf of the UK Government, condemned the actions of Uzbek authorities and police in Andizhan. Straw said he was deeply concerned by allegations that the Uzbek authorities opened fire on protesters in the city.

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