October revolution: ex-president of Kyrgyzstan was taken out of jail

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Parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan ended in riots. Opposition parties refused to accept the voting results. Activists clashed with security forces in the center of Bishkek. On the night of October 6, protesters broke into the Kyrgyz White House. And then they seized the building of the pre-trial detention center, from which the former head of state Almazbek Atambayev was carried away. Izvestia understood what had happened.

Explosive elections

Elections to the parliament of Kyrgyzstan (Jogorku Kenesh) were held on October 4. Four of the 16 associations have overcome the 7% barrier. The two pro-government parties, Birimdik and Mekenim Kyrgyzstan, won a landslide victory, gaining approximately 24% each. The party following them won only 8% of the vote.

Observers during the elections recorded violations. Complained about centralized transportation and bribery of voters. According to a number of reports, one vote was worth 2,000 soms (2,000 rubles). In some cases, citizens were given ballots with a checkmark already placed. “There have never been such dirty elections in the country. Observers and journalists were simply kicked out of the polling stations, ”complained candidate for deputy Kursan Asanov.

Leaders of 12 opposition parties demanded to annul the results of the elections and hold a second vote. “We declare that not only the vote was completely accompanied by unconstitutional and illegal actions on the part of the ruling parties, corrupt officials and bandits, but also the vote count itself was held with gross violations in the conditions of opacity and illegality, ”the politicians said in a statement.

On the afternoon of October 5, opposition supporters gathered at Ala-Too Square in central Bishkek. The protests quickly escalated into clashes with the security forces. The reason was an attempt by the protesters to break down the gates of the White House (the building of parliament and the presidential administration). Police pushed the protesters away from the building using water cannons and stun grenades. Shots were also reported. The oppositionists began to break the paving stones from the sidewalks and throw stones at the security officials. The protesters also began blocking the streets with garbage cans and setting them on fire, throwing Molotov cocktails.

By the evening of October 5, Bishkek hospitals were admitted more than 100 victims of unauthorized actions, including 40 law enforcement officers. It is known, for example, that the leader of the Ata Meken party, Zhanar Akaev, was wounded. During the dispersal of the rally, a fragment of an exploding grenade hit him in the leg. The published footage shows that two men are taking him out of the scene.

From prison to a rally

Amid protests, President Sooronbai Jeenbekov agreed to meet with leaders of political parties. However, he admitted that bribery of voters is a problem. “To eradicate bribery, it is necessary to improve the economic condition of the population. We are working on this, for us this is the main task and goal, ”he said at a meeting with the head of the OSCE mission. The party “Birimdik”, which received the most votes, said that they are ready to participate in the second vote if it is announced. Cellular interruptions have occurred. All this, however, did not help relieve the tension.

Closer to night, the protesters took second attempt to storm the White House… The gate was rammed by a truck, and then broke into the building. Inside, the protesters burned down and destroyed the offices of the deputies. Some looted and left the White House with “souvenirs.” Others threw stacks of papers out of the windows. On social networks, protesters posted photos with trampled portraits of the current president of Kyrgyzstan. Then a massive fire broke out in the building, and clouds of smoke poured out of the windows.

Later, protesters came to the building of the State Committee for National Security (GKNB), where former President Almazbek Atambayev was held in the pre-trial detention center. He was sentenced in June to 11 years in prison on corruption charges. The rioters broke the gates, entered the territory and demanded to release the politician. After negotiations, the heads of the pre-trial detention center took Atambayev out of the detention center. He got into the car amid joyful shouts and is expected to speak at the opposition rally.

Other officials were also released. It is known that the rioters released former Prime Minister Sapar Isakov, former deputies Ravshan Dzhenbekov and Sadyr Japarov. The latter was the first to reach Ala-Too Square. “Of course, I didn’t think that in three and a half years I would be released this way. I hoped everything would be legal. But what happened happened, ”he said to a thunderous ovation from his supporters.

Somalization of the whole country

A resident of Bishkek Nursultan told Izvestia about what was happening. “The Internet has not yet been restored, everyone is using a VPN. I personally use my home Wi-Fi, it was not turned off, only the mobile Internet. As friends say, the protesters have teamed up with the security forces and entered the White House. They wanted new elections, but overthrew the power“, – said a resident of the Kyrgyz capital. Another resident of Bishkek, Isken, says the internet and mobile communications are working.

Yuri Solozobov, Director for International Projects at the Institute for National Strategy, recalls that two revolutions have already taken place in Kyrgyzstan over the years of independence. “The main problem is corruption. The country believes that the deputies work only for their own pocket. The president is not popular. The situation was aggravated by strict quarantine, due to which small and medium-sized businesses froze. There is a request for putting things in order, for a “strong hand”. But there is no one to satisfy this request, ”the expert says. He recalls that a month before the parliamentary elections, all gun shops were closed in the country. “But we see that the Kyrgyz do without weapons. They have enough sticks and stones, ”the source emphasizes.

Political scientist Alexander Vedroussov says that the electoral processes in the republic closely intertwined with the clan specifics of the country. “There is no need to talk about classical democratic procedures in Kyrgyzstan. But even in such conditions, the semblance of political pluralism, democratic decorum must be observed. Otherwise, there is a risk that public sentiment will constantly splashing into the streets. This is what we are now seeing in Bishkek. And the use of force against protesters will only aggravate the crisis situation“, – Vedroussov told Izvestia.

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