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Verdict Expected In High-Profile Kyrgyz Trial

Former Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiev is living in Belarus.
BISHKEK -- A verdict is expected November 2 in the trial of a nephew of ousted Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiev, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

Sanjar Bakiev is accused of fomenting deadly violence between ethnic Uzbeks and Kyrgyz in southern Kyrgyzstan in June.

Sanjar Bakiev is a son of the former president's eldest brother, Jusup Bakiev. He and four of his associates are being charged in connection with the June clashes.

Sanjar Bakiev's public defender, Buaisha Arstanbekova, told RFE/RL that the prosecutor asked the judge to sentence her client to 25 years in jail. He sought 20 years in jail for another defendant and eight-year terms for the other three.

Arstanbekova said the trial has failed to prove Sanjar Bakiev's involvement in "organizing mass public disorder," "organizing an illegal armed group," and "opening fire at unarmed people."

The trial is taking place in the building of the Bishkek military garrison court but is under the jurisdiction of the Jalal-Abad district court.

The trial started on October 20 but was postponed until October 26.

A group formed after the president fled into exile, the Bishkek-based Committee to Protect Kurmanbek Bakiev, has rejected as unfounded all the charges against Sanjar Bakiev and his associates.

Kurmanbek Bakiev has been living in Belarus since he was ousted in the wake of deadly clashes between antigovernment demonstrators and security forces in April. He, several of his brothers, and two sons are wanted by Kyrgyz officials for abuse of power, financial crimes, and ordering security forces to open fire on unarmed demonstrators.