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Former Member Of Kyrgyz President's Office Arrested On Corruption Charges

Manasbek Arabaev

BISHKEK -- A former member of the office of the Kyrgyz president has been arrested on corruption charges.

Kyrgyzstan's State Committee for National Security (UKMK) said on June 3 that Manasbek Arabaev, the ex-chief of the presidential office's department for judicial system reform, was arrested a day earlier and placed in a pretrial detention center.

The UKMK spokesman Rakhat Sulaimanov did not say what Arabaev is accused of.

Arabaev worked in former President Almazbek Atambaev's office for many years and became department chief in 2015.

He was sacked in May last year, six months after new President Sooronbai Jeenbekov was sworn in.

Several associates of Atambaev's have been arrested on corruption charges after he left office in December 2017.

On May 27, Kyrgyz legislation under which former heads of state can be prosecuted came into force amid calls by some politicians for an investigation into decisions made by Atambaev when he was in office.

Limited to a single six-year term by the constitution, Atambaev tapped Jeenbekov, his former prime minister, as his favored successor in the October 2017 presidential election.

But the two have had a public falling out and have criticized each other for more than a year.