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Kyrgyz Clan Leaders To Urge Bakiev To Resign

President Kurmanbek Bakiev

President Kurmanbek Bakiev

BISHKEK -- An organization of Kyrgyz clans says it will send the representatives of 40 clans to meet with ousted President Kurmanbek Bakiev to try to persuade him to officially resign, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

The National Unity Society made the decision at a meeting in Bishkek today. It was decided that the names of those taking part in the clan delegation will be issued on April 16. No date for the meeting with Bakiev was announced.

Mukar Cholponbaev, head of the National Council movement and one of the leaders of the clan society, told RFE/RL that the society session discussed the current political crisis in the country over Bakiev and ways to prevent it from escalating into civil war.

Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiev has reportedly flown out of the country to neighboring Kazakhstan. He has rejected demands that he resign from his office without preconditions.

There is a legend in Kyrgyzstan that Manas, the country's epic hero, united 40 clans to fight against invading Khitans. The Kyrgyz flag also includes 40 rays
of sun to symbolize these clans.