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Kyrgyz Lawmaker Says Charges Against Him 'Politically Motivated'

Ata-Jurt party leader Kamchybek Tashiev
BISHKEK -- The leader of the ruling coalition's Ata-Jurt (Homeland) party faction in the Kyrgyz parliament, Kamchybek Tashiev, says government charges being brought against him are politically motivated, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

Tashiev told RFE/RL on June 15 that the hooliganism charges brought against him by Prosecutor-General Aida Salyanova are an attempt "to prevent my participation in the presidential elections" scheduled for the fall.

On June 14, the Prosecutor-General's press service told journalists that a request had been sent to the parliament to strip Tashiev of his immunity in connection with a proposed investigation into allegations he beat fellow parliament deputy Bakhadyr Suleimanov.

Suleimanov filed a lawsuit against Tashiev on April 1, accusing him of beating him. Suleimanov spent several days at the cardiology center in Bishkek after the alleged assault.

Tashiev insists he never physically assaulted Suleimanov, but admitted they had a heated conversation and verbally insulted each other on April 1. He did not say what they argued about.

The parliament is expected soon to debate the request to strip Tashiev of his immunity from prosecution.

Read more in Kyrgyz here