Thursday, August 16, 2007

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization is in Town

Today is the big summit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Bishkek. For the last week the authorities have been cleaning the streets, putting up colorful signs and sending swarms of police men and women to stand guard in the center of the city. The police here are currently wearing white uniforms. They have taken to directing traffic and the number of vehicles traversing Chui Prospekt has plummeted as a result. Every so often they will block off the main streets to normal pedestrians and drivers so that long conveys of special cars escorted by police cruisers and very low flying helicopters can have the avenues to themselves. Presumably these special cars contain important people attached to the SCO delegations. For the government of Kyrgyzstan hosting the SCO is a big deal. However, my impression is that the US mainstream media has not given much attention to the event.

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