Kyrgyzstan Plans to Evict U.S. Air Base

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan -- Kyrgyzstan plans to shut a U.S. military air base, a source close to President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's administration said Tuesday.

Washington established the air base in Kyrgyzstan in 2001 to support operations in its war in nearby Afghanistan. Russian media said this week that Bakiyev would announce the closure before his visit to Moscow later this month.

Bakiyev's administration, the Kyrgyz government and the U.S. Embassy in Kyrgyzstan have declined to comment on the reports.

Bakiyev plans to meet President Dmitry Medvedev, but the exact date of his visit has not yet been set.

Russia, which also has a military air base in the former Soviet republic, has expressed its unease over the U.S. presence in what it sees as its area of strategic interest.