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Last Updated: Friday, 14 July 2006, 14:19 GMT 15:19 UK
US allowed to stay at Kyrgyz base

The US air base at Manas, Kyrgyzstan
The airbase has been a tricky issue for both countries
Kyrgyzstan is to extend the US lease on an airbase often used to launch US operations in Afghanistan.

US forces have used the Manas airbase, near the Kyrgyz capital, Bishkek, since 2001.

There was no information about how much the US would pay to use the base, but the Kyrgyz government had previously asked for a substantial fee increase.

The US will reportedly provide $150m (82m) in aid and assistance to Kyrgyzstan over the next year.

The country's president had previously asked for a ten-fold increase in fees from $2m to more than $200m, according to reports.

The Manas base is an important logistical hub for the US, and an estimated 1,700 troops and millions of gallons of fuel pass through it every month.

It became even more important last year after Uzbekistan told the US to leave its other Central Asian base, at Karshi-Kanabad.

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