BISHKEK -- The Kyrgyz Parliament's Economic Issues Committee has approved a draft law that would ban the use of right-hand drive cars as taxis, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.
An author of the bill, deputy Narynbek Moldobaev, told RFE/RL that the legislation is aimed at improving road safety, which is poor in Kyrgyzstan.
The Kyrgyz Transportation Safety Department said that 65 percent of the traffic accidents in the country this year involved right-hand drive cars, even though they far less common than left-hand drive cars.
Used right-hand drive vehicles imported from Japan and Russia's Far East are very popular in Kyrgyzstan because they are cheaper than left-hand drive vehicles. Watch: Kyrgyzstan suffers from both a high rate of fatal road accidents and widespread corruption that undermines law enforcement. At the suggestion of President Kurmanbek Bakiev, who claimed that women police officers are more principled than men, the Interior Ministry has created a special unit of female traffic officers to crack down on both problems at once.
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