Kyrgyzstan’s ruling parliamentary coalition collapses

kyrgyz-parliament-479

BISHKEK (TCA) — The pro-presidential Social Democratic Party of Kyrgyzstan (SDPK) has withdrawn from the ruling coalition in Kyrgyzstan’s parliament, meaning that the coalition cabinet of Prime Minister Sooronbai Jeenbekov will have to resign, RFE/RL’s Kyrgyz Service reports.

SDPK faction leader Isa Omurkulov said on October 24 that the decision to withdraw from the coalition was made at a party meeting earlier the same day “because of irreconcilable political views.”

The SDPK was headed by President Almazbek Atambayev before his election as president.

The move comes amid tensions within the ruling coalition over holding a referendum on constitutional changes.

Two parties within the ruling coalition — Ata-Meken (Fatherland) and Onuguu (Progress) — opposed the constitutional changes, which would expand the powers of the prime minister and parliament and reform Kyrgyzstan’s judicial system.

Civil society activists and opposition groups have also criticized the proposals, accusing President Atambayev of seeking to extend his grip on power.

Kyrgyzstan’s current constitution was adopted in June 2010 after mass protests toppled then-President Kurmanbek Bakiev. The referendum that approved the current constitution in 2010 also prohibited making amendments to the text before 2020.

Jeenbekov’s Government took power in April following the resignation of his predecessor, Temir Sariev.

President Atambayev now has three working days to ask a parliamentary party to form a new coalition.

Sergey Kwan

TCA