Do Not Forget Kyrgyzstan

**Parliament to Gather for Emergency Session**

Kyrgyz Opposition Leaders are asking for early presidential elections and for a revote of the flawed parliamentary elections:

“The authorities are losing control of the situation. Current developments in southern Kyrgyzstan, where a rally has been going on since March 4, suggest that not only the opposition, but also the people want change in the authorities,” said Otunbayeva.

“The opposition has ample strength and opportunity to assume leadership of the popular movement. But we want to tackle these problems legally,” she said.

The speakers said parliament must stabilize the situation and discuss the issue of early presidential elections and repeat parliamentary elections. (Sound like Ukraine?)

Police units have been sent to Dzhalal-Abad, where a protest rally is being held, Otunbayeva said.

“We are obliged to urge the world community to follow the situation in Kyrgyzstan closely and to ensure that our country remain stable and democratic,” Boldzhurova said.

The Kyrgyz opposition was angered by the outcome of the first round in the parliamentary elections, held on February 27. The second round is set to be held on March 14.

In related news The Turkish Weekly reports on the different demonstrations around the country:

The Nooken district saw one of the largest demonstrations in protest at the way the election was run. Five thousand supporters of opposition candidate Dooronbek Sadyrbaev gathered on March 4 to call for the resignation of the district government chief, his deputy and tax inspection officials whom they accuse of interfering in the elections.

Sadyrbaev, who is running in the second round, warned of possible inter-ethnic conflict following brawls between Kyrgyz and Uzbek voters in Nooken. Many Uzbeks in the district back Sadyrbaev’s rival Jenish Eshenkulov. About 500 staged their own protest in support of their candidate, Eshenkulov. Both Eshenkulov and Sadyrbaev are Kyrgyz.

Government officials have begun negotiations with 100 protesters in Jalalabad who occupied the regional government building on March 4, forcing out officials and throwing away portraits of Akaev. The occupiers were among a group of 3,000 supporters of Jusupbek Bakiev, who lost in his constituency on February 27.

The protesters, clad in pink scarves, demanded that the election results be cancelled, and that Akaev and regional leaders should resign.

Also on March 4, about 300 supporters of candidate Naken Kasiev gathered in the Atbashy village of the Naryn region to await Central Election Commission, CEC, confirmation of the results of the elections which Kasiev lost. They announced they would picket the government building in Bishkek if the CEC did not take into account alleged electoral violations by Askar Salymbekov, the winner.

On March 2, around 400 supporters of candidate Jusupjan Jeenbekov, now running in the second round in the Kogart constituency of Jalalabad, staged a protest demanding the replacement of local election officials they claimed had shown bias.

About 500 protestors backing candidate Tursunbayhoji Alimov blocked the Osh to Aravan road on March 1. On the same day in Karasuu, 600 supporters of candidate Arap Tolonov blocked the roads leading in and out of the town, protesting the results of elections.

**Emergency Parliamentary Session**

The Kyrgyz parliament is preparing to gather for an emergency session on March 10, Zeina Kurmanov, leader of the Right Coalition centrist faction, said on Monday.

“The signatures have already been collected. To hold an emergency parliamentary session, one-third of the deputies must support the motion. The emergency session will be held on March 10,” he said.

“Judging from the situation, the government is incapable of solving the problems facing the country,” said Kurmanov.

Protests are currently being held in Dzhalal-Abad in southern Kyrgyzstan and in Naryn in the north. Over 1,500 people are reported to have joined the rally in Dzhalal-Abad and about 1,000 are taking part in Naryn. Some of the protesters are blocking the Bishkek-Torugart highway leading to China.

Kurmanov said the protests were provoked by “flagrant violations of the election law in the first round of the parliamentary elections.”

Update: (8:00 AM) Instapundit is spreading the word for the courageous demonstrators with his “Big Voice”.

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