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Kyrgyz Parliament Approves New Government

Prime Minister Sooronbai Jeenbekov (center) speaks during a parliament session on November 8.

BISHKEK -- Kyrgyz lawmakers have approved a new government in which most ministers from the previous cabinet either keep their positions or are being moved to a different ministerial post.

The vote on November 9 confirmed the proposals made by reappointed Prime Minister Sooronbai Jeenbekov.

The new government includes one person who was not in the previous cabinet -- Cholpon Sultanbekova, who replaces Gulmira Kudaiberdieva as a deputy prime minister.

Kudaiberdieva, meanwhile, has been named education minister.

Five other ministers in the previous government have also been moved to different cabinet posts.

Jeenbekov's previous government resigned on October 26 after Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambaev's Social Democratic Party's (SPD) withdrew from the ruling coalition.

The SPD quit the alliance after some coalition partners refused to support SPD proposals for constitutional amendments that call for expanding the powers of the prime minister.

The constitution does not allow Atambaev to run for a second presidential term when his term ends in 2017.

The SPD's proposed amendments would allow Atambaev to become a powerful prime minister if he obtains the post after 2017.

Kyrgyzstan will hold a national referendum on December 11 about the proposed constitutional amendments.