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Kyrgyz Report: November 15, 2000

15 November 2000

Ten people continued their protest picket in the town of Jalal-Abad on 15 November for the 31st consecutive day. They are demanding the release of seven men sentenced by a Bishkek district court on 1 September on charges of plotting to assassinate President Askar Akayev last year.

The Bishkek City Court began on 7 November to consider the appeal by the seven men and this was completed on 15 November with the questioning of Timur Stamkulov, one of the eight convicted who was amnestied and released on 1 September. Judge Rysbek ShukurAliyev questioned on 15 November Sergei Jeenbaev too, an official of the Security Ministry, and the witnesses will begin to give testimonies on 16 November.

Fifteen people continued on 15 November a protest picket in front of the parliamentary building in Bishkek for the second day. They are demanding to restore the parliamentarian authority of Bakyt Kerimbekov, elected deputy of parliament last April, or at least to allow him to participate in a new election. The Central Election Commission deprived him of the authority on 18 October and set a new run-off election for 19 November. Kerimbekov's former rivals, Mukar Cholponbaev and Taberik Akmatbaev should participate in these elections. They occupied the 6th and 7th places in the first round.

Opposition candidate Omurbek SubanAliyev collected most of votes in the first round in the Issyk-Kul constituency on 20 February, but a local court annuled the results and the repeated first round was held on 31 March. 6 candidates participated and Kerimbekov collected most of votes. He and his nearest contender took part in the run-off on 16 April and Kerimbekov won it, receiving a deputy mandate on 4 May. However, a district court ruled on 13 June that Kerimbekov's registration documents were incorrect and he could not be a deputy. The Supreme Court upheld the ruling on 3 July. Kerimbekov filed a counter-suit but lost.

The parliamentary Legislative Assembly decided on 15 November to hold hearings on problems of Kyrgyz citizens working in other CIS countries. Deputy Adaham Madumarov is an initiator of the hearings and government officials would be invited. According to Madumarov, about 1,500 Kyrgyz citizens are working now at tobacco plantations in the Shelek district of Almaty Oblast as real slaves, and more Kyrgyz people work in the same conditions in other regions of Kazakhstan and Russia.

Customs officers of some Russian towns confiscated goods belonging to Kyrgyz businessmen late in October, inflicting financial damage of about a million US dollars and driving four Kyrgyz businesspersons to commit suicide.

Executive Secretary of the CIS Yuri Yarov arrived in Bishkek today. He met with President Askar Akayev and discussed the agenda of the CIS summit to be held in Minsk on 1 December. Akayev told journalists today that the formation of a free trade zone at the summit would be the first step in creating a free economic zone in the CIS. Yarov said the trade turnout between the CIS countries has increased this year by 38 percent compared with the same period of 1999. Yarov will meet in Bishkek with Prime Minister Amangeldi MurAliyev too.

First Vice Prime Minister Boris Silaev announced his resignation today. According to him, Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov agreed to give him a post in the Moscow government. Silaev became first vice prime minister in April 1998 and had been before mayor of Bishkek, the capital city.

The high voltage power line 'Jetigen' in the mountainous Naryn Province has crashed under heavy snowfalls. According to specialists, it could be repaired in the spring only. Snow thickness in the mountains is now 3 to 5 meters and icing of the lines has reached 10 centimeters. There was an outage at the mountainous Makmal gold mine in the Toguz-Toro district of neighboring Jalal-Abad Province yesterday, but it was connected today with the At-Bashy hydro power station in Naryn Province.

Naryn Idinov.
The news is based on reports sent by RFE/RL correspondents Bubukan Dosalieva and Ulan Eshmatov from Bishkek, Yrysbai Abdyraimov from Jalal-Abad, Damir Kalykov from Naryn.