New majority coalition formed in Kyrgyzstan’s parliament

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BISHKEK (TCA) — A new majority coalition was formed in Kyrgyzstan’s parliament on November 3, less than two weeks after the previous ruling coalition collapsed.

The new coalition includes pro-presidential Social Democratic Party of Kyrgyzstan (SDPK), the Kyrgyzstan party, and the Bir Bol (Be United) party.

Prime Minister Sooronbai Jeenbekov was again nominated for the post.

Jeenbekov’s Cabinet resigned on October 26 after the SDPK quit the ruling coalition because some factions in the Parliament refused to support constitutional amendments proposed by President Almazbek Atambayev.

On November 2, the parliament approved December 11 as the date for a national referendum on the constitutional changes.

If passed, the constitutional changes would strengthen the powers of the prime minister, a move President Atambayev’s opponents say is aimed at extending his grip on power, RFE/RL’s Kyrgyz Service reported.

Two parties within the collapsed ruling coalition — Ata-Meken (Fatherland) and Onuguu (Progress) — opposed the constitutional changes.

The current Constitution bars Atambayev from running for a second presidential term when his mandate ends next year, and critics say the proposed reform would enable him to become a powerful prime minister.

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.

Sergey Kwan

TCA