Kyrgyz President Rejects Government Shake-Up
<div class="caption"><div class="watermark"> <a href="http://gdb.rferl.org/51178C5B-2177-4E0F-BE64-CD85F455CB6B_mw800_mh600.jpg" rel="ibox" title="Kurmanbek Bakiev (file photo) (RFE/RL)"> <img alt="Kurmanbek Bakiev (file photo) (RFE/RL)" src="http://gdb.rferl.org/51178C5B-2177-4E0F-BE64-CD85F455CB6B_w203.jpg" class="photo" border="0"></a></div><p>Kurmanbek Bakiev (file photo) (RFE/RL)</p></div>March 28, 2007 (RFE/RL) -- Kyrgyzstan's president Kurmanbek Bakiev has rejected a decision by his prime minister to sack five government ministers, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reported.
Prime Minister Azim Isabekov announced the dismissals earlier today, describing them as a goodwill gesture to the opposition.
Bakiev, however, rejected the decision, saying government members should continue their work until an agreement is reached on the formation of a coalition government.
Isabekov told a press conference that the dismissals would allow "new people" with "new ideas" to enter the government for the sake of the country's stability.
"We would like for there to be real stability in our country, so that everyone feels [that] -- our citizens, as well as international organizations and investors who are seeking to invest in our economy," Isabekov said.
The officials Isabekov intended to fire included First Deputy Prime Minister Daniyar Usenov, Emergency Situations Minister Janysh Rustenbekov, Economic Development and Trade Minister Sadyrbek Moldokulov, Health Minister Shailoobek Niyazov, and government administration head Tynychbek Tabaldiev.
Leaders of the opposition United Front for a Worthy Future for Kyrgyzstan dismissed the move and called for early presidential elections.
But United Kyrgyzstan -- a newly formed opposition movement -- said it wanted to cooperate with President Kurmanbek Bakiev on reforms and on forming a coalition government.
The new opposition group includes former Prosecutor-General Azimbek Beknazarov, former Foreign Minister Roza Otunbaeva, and Social Democratic party leader Almaz Atanbaev.
(with material from agency reports)