Ethnic rioting spread Sunday in southern Kyrgyzstan, where at least 80 people have been killed and more than 1,000 wounded. Thousands of Uzbeks fled after their homes were torched by roving mobs of Kyrgyz men.
Fires destroyed much of Osh, the second-largest city in a Central Asian country that hosts U.S. and Russian military air bases. Stores were looted and the city was running out of food.
Gunfire rang out Sunday in another major southern city, Jalal-Abad, where the day before a rampaging mob burned a university, besieged a police station and seized an armored vehicle and other weapons from a local military unit. Thousands of Kyrgyz men brandishing sticks, metals bars and hunting rifles gathered at the city's horse racing track, shouting anti-Uzbek slogans while police stayed away.
That the current Interim President Roza Otunbayeva has begged Russia for troops underscores how utterly critical the situation has become for her government.