Ulan Sarbanov in an undated file photo (RFE/RL)
BISHKEK, 22 February 2006 (RFE/RL) -- The trial of five former and current Kyrgyz senior officials started today in the capital, Bishkek, and was promptly adjourned because the lawyer of one of the defendants was absent.
The defendants include the current head of the Kyrgyz National Bank, Ulan Sarbanov, former Finance Minister Sultan Mederov, and the former head of the presidential administration, Medet Sadyrkulov.
They are all charged with abuse of office and of giving $420,000 as a bribe to former President Askar Akaev in 1999.
Akaev, who was ousted from his post in March 2005, is unlikely to attend the hearings.
The case will resume on 24 February.