MOSCOW — Uzbekistan’s president has backed away from proposed constitutional changes that would have prevented the Karakalpakstan region from holding a referendum on separation from the country.
A large protest against the proposed changes broke out in the region’s capital, Nuku, on Friday. Protesters reportedly attempted to take over government buildings and clashed with police.
Karakalpakstan is a large, mostly desert region in northwestern Uzbekistan.
President Shavkat Mirziyoyev met with regional lawmakers the day after the unrest and later announced that a draft new constitution would retain the region’s right to seek secession. It also imposed a nighttime curfew for the region until August 2.
No unrest took place during the first night of the curfew, Russian news agency Tass quoted a National Guard spokesman as saying.