US offers Kyrgyzstan $1 billion over Manas air base
U.S. cargo planes at Manas airbase in Kyrgyzstan   /  Photo:

US offers Kyrgyzstan $1 billion over Manas air base

22 Jun, 03:13 PM

The Unites States is ready to pay Kyrgyzstan one billion dollars to continue using the Manas air base, a Russian daily writes, adding the payment is likely to be disguised as foreign investment from Turkey.

In February 2009 Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev signed a decree ordering US troops to leave Manas. The US its bases its military operations in Afghanistan from the air base and has repeatedly said it wants to keep the lease.

According to Nezavisimaya Gazeta daily, Turkey’s President Abgulla Gul directly told President Bakiyev at a recent meeting that if the United States can continue to use Manas, Kyrgyzstan can expect a billion dollars of investment.

The American military has already invested $60 million into Manas, and is ready to invest even more, the commander of the air base said.

“We have $50 million more which we are ready to invest if the Kyrgyz and American governments reach an agreement and sign a new deal,” the newspaper quotes Colonel Blaine D. Holt as saying.

The United States has recently announced that annual financial aid payments to Kyrgyzstan will be increased from $25 million to $41.5 million, the paper adds. Some $30 million more is expected to be invested into the modernization of the Kyrgyz air transportation system.

Tags: Kyrgyzstan, US, Manas

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