Tag Archives: Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyz ex-President surrendered

Kyrgyzstan’s ex-president Almazbek Atambayev has surrendered to the authorities, the supporters of the former head of state confirmed to TASS news agency.

Atambayev has been taken away from the territory of his residence by police agents,” a spokesman for Atambayev’s supporters said.

More than 50 people were injured, and one special police forces agent was killed  when Atambayev‘s supporters resisted the operation aimed at detaining the ex-president, who has been investigated in abuse of power, corruption, forgery and other crimes. Atambayev has denied all allegations, claiming they are politically motivated, he insists on his innocence and called his supporter for protest demonstration in capital Bishkek.

AMENDED:

We continue to follow this situation closely. We expect the situation to be resolved without escalation and in full respect of the Kyrgyz Republic’s legal framework” European External Action Service spokesperson said.

 

Kyrgyzstan ex-President arrest failed

The speaker of the Kyrgyz Parliament Dastan Dzhumabekov interrupted his vacation and headed to the capital Bishkek, his secretary told Akipress. The crisis meeting was proposed by a few Members of Parliament after the failure of arrest of ex-President Almazbek Atambayev, resulted in clashes between commandos and  the supporters, who considered the action was politically motivated and unjust.

At present the residence of Atambayev is in flames, the Koi Tash village is barricaded by his supporters, preventing police to enter, and  ex-President whereabouts are unknown. He made a statement via telephone, calling police to restrain from shooting people to avoid “the worst“.

The supporters of ex-President and inhabitants of Koi Tash village have captured a few commandos, and demanded to restore the internet and electricity in the exchange for their release. At present the information concerning the evens in the village is contradictory.  (Images below: Atambayev greets his supporters in the beginning of the police operation attempting his arrest).

On June 27 the Parliament of Kyrgyzstan voted to strip Atambayev of the immunity and status of the ex-President, opening the way to trial. He is suspected in a number of crimes, including corruption in the reconstruction of the Bishkek  power plant, the illegal release of the criminal Aziz Batukayev; and illegal obtaining of a plot for the construction of a house in the village of Koi Tash. The lawyer of the ex-President Slesarev assessed the decision of the deputies as not consistent with the country’s Constitution. Atambayev denied all the allegations, insisting the entire process is politically motivated.

A month ago Atambayev was commenting on his possible arrest: “I am ready for anything. I will resist. I have a premium weapon. Speaking specifically about this. The Kyrgyz have a proverb: rather than lying to die, it is better to die by shooting. But I will be alone, there will be no one near me”.

At present in Koi Tash, located 20 km from Bishkek, the electricity and internet were cutt off. Journalists from the Kyrgyz media reporting the special operation to arrest ex-President stopped contacting the newsroom. They are not available either on the Internet or by phone. All TV channels, sympathizing ex-President are shut down since the beginning of the special operation of his arrest.

The authorities informed about one dead, and 43 people from Koi Tash clashes hospitalized.

Atambayev led Kyrgyzstan from 2011 to 2017 and became the first president to voluntarily leave his post after a full first term. He initiated the nomination of the incumbent president Sooronbai Jeenbekov as a candidate. Last spring, Atambayev publicly admitted that there were serious disagreements with Jeenbekov, from then their rivalry became public.

The European Union supports the democratisation of Kyrgyzstan;

Support to democratic elections as the cornerstone of any democratic system has been provided since 2010, and a new programme for democratisation through electoral reform has become operational in 2016 (€13.1 million). A substantial Rule of Law programme (€13.5 million for 2014-2018, €13 million for 2018-2021) helps to enhance the quality of legislation and increase the efficiency, independence, professionalism and capacities of the judiciary. In addition, the EU provided support to people affected by the violence and financed a large number of projects aiming at increasing human security, building trust and preventing future conflicts. Around €20 million has been committed for stabilisation and democratisation support.” (Source: European External Action Service).

Uzbek refugees charged with terrorism in Sweden

For more than a year, the three men from Central Asia  planned a terrorist attack against Sweden, according to the prosecutor,  Expressen newspaper reports.

They have bought hundreds of kilos of chemicals that can be used to make explosives and put pictures on terror targets in Stockholm.

At the same time, they and another three men have sent money to the Islamic state.

Expressen has close up of the suspects.

On July 5, 2017, 46-year-old construction worker David Idrisson  writes a chat message to an acquaintance who is in Syria, in an area controlled by the Islamic state: We need a car mechanic.” The answer: “Big brother, the best mechanics are with you. Or do you need someone who can decorate the car when to go and undergo marriage? Big brother, if you want, I can send you a video that teaches about how to decorate the car and I will also contact some brothers who are involved in decorating cars before the wedding if God wants.

May God reward you,” writes Idrisson.

This is one of many conversations included in the evidence that the prosecutor invokes for David Idrisson and his two co-defendants Atabek Abdullaev, 39, and Bakhtiyor Umarov, 30, for more than a year to prepare a terrorist act in Sweden.

David Idrisson (46) Arrested on April 30th. Prosecuted for preparation for terrorist crimes and for the financing of particularly serious crimes by money transfers to the Islamic State. Was the one who bought the chemicals as the prosecution applies. Also charged for small drug offenses after police found 49 grams of cannabis in his car. Citizen of Uzbekistan.  Registered in the Stockholm area but lives according to their own declaration in Strömsund in Jämtland. Divorced, state that he has eleven children.

He arrived to Sweden under refugee quota and received a residence permit in 2008. The Migration Board stated that he was harassed by the Uzbek authorities because he was a practicing Muslim. Has changed its name in Sweden in the meantime. Denies the charges of terrorist offenses.

Bakhtiyor Umarov, 30 Arrested on April 30th. Prosecuted for preparation of terrorist crimes and for the financing of particularly serious crimes by money transfers to the Islamic State. Also charged for having used a false Greek passport when he transferred money to a recipient in Turkey. Citizen of Uzbekistan. Registered home address  in Stockholm. Married, his wife and children live in Turkey. Arrived in Sweden the first time in 2011. Returned in 2012 to Uzbekistan and then lived in Russia and later Turkey. On December 30, he traveled from Istanbul to Sweden and applied for asylum. Has told the Swedish Migration Board that he has been harassed by the Uzbek security service.Has written in a chat that he lived together with the man who carried out the terrorist attack against the nightclub Reina in Istanbul New Year’s night 2017. During the investigation, he suggested that he confused the assassin with someone else. In a chat he said that he is watching videos with decapitations with his two-year-old son. Propaganda of the Islamic state has been found in his phone and computer. He has admitted that his voice is heard in a propaganda video for Islamic state. Denies the charges of terrorist offenses.

Atabek Abdullaev, 39 Arrested on April 30th. Prosecuted for preparation of terrorist crimes and for the financing of particularly serious crimes by money transfers to the Islamic State. Also charged for having invoked a false employer certificate when he tried to become a customer of HandelsbankenCitizens of Kyrgyzstan, speak Uzbek. Written in Stockholm. Missing residence permit in Sweden. Came to Sweden in August 2017 according to your own words. He has applied for a work permit in Poland to get the right to stay in the EU. Stated that he has a wife in Kyrgyzstan who has two children. In his computer and phones, investigators have found material that shows that he supports the Islamic state. In social media he has posted pictures on, among other things, the T-center and Mall of Scandinavia, which prosecutors interpret as possible terrorist targets. Denies the charges of terrorist offenses.

All men deny any allegations of terrorist offenses.

According to David Idrisson, the “wedding” and “car mechanic” chat is about plans for a real wedding. The chemicals were part of a larger batch of different products, including color, which he bought from a company that went bankrupt. He was interested in the color but not the chemicals, he claims. When it comes to the chemicals, which are in the center, he has provided a full and detailed explanation of how they have come into his possession. It has happened involuntarily, says his defender.

Man, 34 years from Uzbekistan. old Arrested on May 28. Prosecuted for financing particularly serious crimes through money transfers to the Islamic State. Citizen of Uzbekistan. Registered in the Stockholm area. Arrived to Sweden the first time in 2008. Searched asylum but failed and was expelled. In 2011, he applied for work and residence permits, which he was granted. He has wife and three children in Sweden. Denies the charges.

Man, 39 years old from Uzbekistan. Arrested on October 18th. Prosecuted for financing particularly serious crimes through money transfers to the Islamic State.  Citizen of Uzbekistan. Registered in Östergötland, he himself said that he lives in Stockholm. Denies the charges.

Man, 24 years old from Uzbekistan. Arrested on September 5. Prosecuted for financing particularly serious crimes through money transfers to the Islamic State. Citizen of Uzbekistan. Registered in Jämtland. The only one of the suspects who is not detained. Denies  the charges.

 

 

 

Kyrgyzstan opposition leader faces corruption charges

kyrgyz-opposition-leader

Kyrgyzstan’s state security service said it detained opposition politician Omurbek Tekebayev on Sunday on charges of corruption and fraud, a move that may eliminate him as a contender for presidency in the upcoming election.

Tekebayev, 58, leads the Ata Meken (Fatherland) party’s parliamentary faction and is one of the most outspoken critics of President Almazbek Atambayev, whose term ends this year.

The  Kyrgyzstan will hold a presidential election on 19 November 2017.

The state security service made a statement, declaring the detention upon airport arrival from Turkey. In a separate statement, the prosecutor general’s office revealed it suspected Tekebayev of accepting a $1 million bribe from a Russian investor in 2010.

Tekebayev, who was then a senior member of provisional government, promised the investor he would be able to take over a local telecommunications company, prosecutors said.Kanybek Imanaliyev, a member of parliament from Tekebayev’s Ata Meken (Socialist party), said he denied any wrongdoing.

 

Kyrgyzstan: new education system

kyrgyz-students

 Birgit Wetzel, OPINON

The shock sits deep, even today, seven years later.

Kyrgyzstan Kyrgyzstan took the final place in the Pisa test, the students had the worst results from 75 participating countries. That was in 2010. The leaders of the country awoke. They had to do something, but how?

“So, this is the main message from PISA: stay ambitious; Work harder to reach your full potential, no matter how you get out of the miserable situation.“ the study says.

The situation was difficult for the small country with its population of about 5 million, whose high mountains cover the vast majority of the country, whose rugged borders separate ethnic groups and whose neighbors show little willingness to cross-border cooperation on all sides. The state fund was weak, ground treasures are few.

Co-operation in Central Asia was difficult after the collapse of the Soviet Union. Nationalities rediscovered their peculiarities, set boundaries, and marched against each other. National leaders in Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan rivaled over power and influence.

While new, stiff or rigid structures were being established in the three large territories, the Kyrgyz drove their leaders out of office when they were corrupted or no longer driven by the will of the people. Revolutions shook the capital Bishkek until the path to self-determination and democracy stabilized.

It should go further, and education plays a decisive role. Kyrgyzstan has a young population – the average age is 24. Until now, half of the country´s work force works abroad, mostly in Russia. In order to raise creativity, to create jobs within the country, and to regulate the destiny of the state itself, Kyrgyz youth needs new and better educatio, kindergartens, schools and universities.

The Pisa results gave the decisive impulse. A panel of experts was established along the lines of the groups that the government had already used for reforms in other areas in May 2014. The new Education Public Advisory Council, or EPAC for short, creates transparency and identifies the necessary reforms, informs the public and brings forward the proposals for improvements to governmental bodies. There they are discussed and implemented, that is the goal.

The new body EPAC has already brought forward a lot of weak spots on which urgent action must be taken to ensure that Kyrgyzstab has a future as an independent country. Where, what, when should happen and how, that is where the panel works now. The EU supports the necessary steps for education reforms with programs such as the project “Fostering and Monitoring the Education Reforms in the Kyrgyz Republic” co-funded by Kyrgyz NGO BIOM and Konrad Adenauer.

Coordinator and Assistant to the Board of Reform is Khanat Kubatbekov. He welcomes the work of the reform groups and notes that Kyrgyzstan is the only country in Central Asia where public councils or reform groups would work successfully. It was not until 2014 that they were launched. Therefore, their tasks and objectives are not yet known to all. Trust still needs to grow. This sometimes makes their work difficult. At the same time, he considers the work to be important: problems are identified, examined more closely, research results and experts are consulted. As a result, the government receives suggestions for improvement. It is not always easy to find a common language, he admits, but the biggest problem is corruption.

This is what other members of the 11-member EPAC Group are also aware of. They have already set up a long list of topics: several thousand children do not attend school, the average age of teachers is 50 years, which is too high, while the salaries are too low. The education of teachers must be updated, as many of them teach with old methods and standards. No wonder, because there are far too few new books. Even among the students, only 80% are proud owners of schoolbooks. Modern works should soon be downloaded via the Internet, interactive books, which will also be available in Kyrgyz, Russian and Uzbek. But since only 8% of the schools have Internet so far, there is still much to be done.

The school hours are to be extended, the preschool period will increase again from three to 12 months, the offer for a second language should rise and teachers should receive further training. Because it costs a lot of money, international donors such as the UN, UNICEF, US AID, and the EU are providing funding in various areas.

Until all reforms are implemented, it will probably take seven years, expert expect. But EPAC is the driver of modernization and the reforms are running.

Each child is now registered and is accompanied on his school career. Some 75,000 teachers received training in regional centers over the last three years. The Pisa shock was a healing shock, which the EPAC met with great energy. A lot has happened in a short time, but many things still have to be done.

Our children need competences, says Larissa Marchenko, the education expert. The state is being transformed into a democracy, the economy is transferred into a market economy. Since, the children need the appropriate knowledge. They must be able to compete on the international labor market. Many people still leave because they find no suitable job in Kyrgyzstan. This is to change. When children leave the school, they should enter the labor market or continue training. In any case, however, they should be able to make decisions as a socialized citizen of a modern democracy.

Birgit Wetzel, Berlin-Bishkek