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Kyrgyz President Said Open To Clemency For Detained Opposition Trio

A protester holds a leaflet with pictures of the detained opposition leaders in Osh on October 11.
JALAL-ABAD, Kyrgyzstan -- Kyrgyzstan's government ombudsman says President Amazbek Atambaev has expressed a willingness to consider clemency for three opposition lawmakers at the center of continuing protests.

Ata-Jurt (Homeland) party leaders Kamchybek Tashiev, Sadyr Japarov, and Talant Mamytov were detained early this month and have been charged with stirring public unrest for their roles in protests by about 1,000 demonstrators that turned violent in Bishkek on October 3.

Kyrgyz Ombudsman Tursunbek Akun told RFE/RL that he had met with Atambaev and the latter suggested clemency was possible but "only after they face trial and receive sentences for what they did."

Akun's comments came as around 1,500 protesters gathered once again in Kyrgyzstan's southern city of Jalal-Abad to demand the release of the three men.

It was the latest effort in a campaign that began soon after the detentions and has resulted in a handful of street demonstrations.

Kyrgyz Deputy Prime Minister Kamila Talieva and Adakhan Madumarov, the leader of another opposition party, United Kyrgyzstan party, joined the October 16 protest in Jalal-Abad.