Uzbek president asks Putin to help fight radical Islam in Central Asia

December 10, 2014 4:42 PM

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TASHKENT (Reuters) - Uzbekistan urged Russia on Wednesday to help protect Central Asia against what it said would be a rising threat from militant Islam as U.S. forces draw down their numbers in Afghanistan.

President Islam Karimov said Central Asia, a resource-rich and mainly Muslim region nestled between Russia, China and Afghanistan, could face a fate similar to that of Iraq, swathes of which have been taken over by Islamic State insurgents.

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