Atambayev orders probe against former Kyrgyz interim government members

BISHKEK (TCA) — Kyrgyzstan President Almazbek Atambayev on September 15 ordered the General Prosecutor’s Office to ensure a thorough investigation into the involvement of members of the country’s 2010 interim government in the escape to abroad in 2010 of Kadyrzhan Batyrov, the then leader of Kyrgyzstan’s Uzbek minority, whom Kyrgyz authorities call “the leader of separatists”.

According to the presidential press service, Atambayev made the decision after receiving from the National Security Committee of new information concerning Batyrov’s illegal crossing of the Kyrgyz border in 2010, when he was wanted by Kyrgyz authorities, as well as after the filing, on 14 September 2016, of a criminal case to investigate the involvement of former interim government members in Batyrov’s escape.  

“I do understand that there will be tough resistance from those that do not want to make all the circumstances public. But our citizens must know the truth, whatever it is,” the President was quoted by his press service as saying.  

Batyrov was found guilty of organizing deadly inter-ethnic clashes in the south of Kyrgyzstan in June 2010 and of separatism. He was sentenced in absentia to a life imprisonment. Before the trial, Batyrov had received political asylum in a European country.    

Relations between Atambayev and his former fellows — the former members of the interim government that governed the country right after the April revolution of 2010 — have soured after late in August, they spoke against Constitutional amendments proposed by the President. The next day, August 31, speaking at the celebration of Kyrgyzstan’s Independence Day, Atambayev accused former interim government members of lies and hatred towards him.        

In his speech, the President criticized 2010 interim government members, including the-then interim President Roza Otunbayeva. “They accuse me of all sins and crimes, up to such a serious crime as usurpation of state power,” Atambayev said, referring to their call on the Kyrgyz people to reject constitutional amendments initiated by the President and the Parliament’s majority.  

The address, signed by Otunbayeva and former members of the 2010 interim government, says that Kyrgyz citizens made a choice at the referendum in 2010 and legalized a parliamentary system, as well as voted for a 10-year moratorium on changes to the Constitution until 2020.

Atambayev also said that some interim government members must eventually be responsible for looting, the bank cells (robbery), inciting separatism, and for the use of official position for illicit enrichment in 2010.

Sergey Kwan


Sergey Kwan has worked for The Times of Central Asia as a journalist, translator and editor since its foundation in March 1999. Prior to this, from 1996-1997, he worked as a translator at The Kyrgyzstan Chronicle, and from 1997-1999, as a translator at The Central Asian Post.
Kwan studied at the Bishkek Polytechnic Institute from 1990-1994, before completing his training in print journalism in Denmark.

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