Brother of convicted opposition lawmaker shot dead in Kyrgyzstan

Aida Salyanova (RFE/RL photo)

BISHKEK (TCA) — A brother of former Kyrgyzstan Prosecutor-General and opposition politician Aida Salyanova has been shot dead in his house in Bishkek, RFE/RL’s Kyrgyz Service reports.

The Kyrgyz Interior Ministry said on November 6 that several masked men rushed into 42-year-old Ulan Salyanov’s house overnight and shot him. The ministry overruled a political motivation for the assassination, and said an investigation has been launched.

The killing took place less than a month after a court in Bishkek found Aida Salyanova guilty of abuse of office and condemned her to five years in prison, but postponed her imprisonment until her 2-year-old daughter reaches age 14.

Salyanova, a leading member of the opposition Ata-Meken (Fatherland) party has maintained her innocence, insisting that the case against her was politically motivated.

Authorities targeted Salyanova for investigation in March, days after Ata-Meken leader Omurbek Tekebaev was arrested on the basis of what his supporters say were trumped-up bribe-taking allegations.

Tekebaev, who was named as Ata-Meken’s candidate in the October 15 election shortly after his arrest, was convicted in August and sentenced to eight years in prison.

His supporters say the conviction was aimed at preventing him from running in the election.

The ruling Social Democratic Party’s candidate, former Prime Minister Sooronbai Jeenbekov, who was publicly supported by outgoing President Almazbek Atambayev, won the October 15 poll.

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