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Kyrgyz Man Threatens Self-Immolation If District Head Not Sacked

TOKTOGUL, Kyrgyzstan -- A man in the southern Kyrgyz region of Jalal-Abad has threatened to commit self-immolation unless a local governor is fired, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

Salabat Anikeev told RFE/RL he has written a letter to President Roza Otunbaeva and demanded that she sack Toktogul district Governor Satylgan Arstanbekov by the end of this week.

Anikeev, an ethnic Kyrgyz, charged that the current government "has forgotten the promises it gave to the people of Kyrgyzstan on April 7," when then-President Kurmanbek Bakiev was toppled and the opposition came to power.

He said the Toktogul district's current leadership is made up of people who belong to Bakiev's clan, which is from the Jalal-Abad region.

In his letter to Otunbaeva, which he showed to RFE/RL, Anikeev said that Arstanbekov used to be the deputy governor of the district. He also noted that Arstanbekov's current deputy was the coordinator of the pro-Bakiev Ak-Jol Party during Bakiev's presidency.

Anikeev said those men cannot be charged with governing the district with the new government having issued an arrest warrant for Bakiev and several of his relatives.

He said he will set himself ablaze at noon on August 9 if his demand for Arstanbekov's dismissal is ignored.