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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 16 - 22 DECEMBER 2007
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Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. Authorities drag the loyal parties into parliament by the ears.
2. There is no regional threshold in the world.
3. President is the main player and the arbiter of the political system.
4. Court paves the way for some parties into parliament..
5. 'Ata Meken" demands to reconsider the election results.
6. Protesters are being arrested and tried.
7. Bakiyev gets 'a pocket parliament'.
8. Election Commission approves authorities of new parliamentarians.
9. Bakiyev: Choose a premier, who would not meddle in politics.
10. The US criticizes Kyrgyz elections.
11. Kyrgyz model for unification of Ukraine.
12. Dissent members of CEC are considered opposition ones.
13. European and World banks help Kyrgyzstan.
14. Also in the week of 16 - 22 December 2007…

16 December, Sunday:

1. AUTHORITIES DRAG THE LOYAL PARTIES INTO PARLIAMENT BY THE EARS. Kyrgyzstan held early parliamentary election on 16 December, and for the first time, all the 90 deputies (more than in the previous parliament by 15) were elected on party tickets. Twelve parties took part in the elections, and according to the exit polls, three of them - Ak Jol, Turan and the Party of Communists should have seats in the parliament. The Central Election Commission (CEC) announced preliminary results on 17 December (after 95 percent of ballots were counted), saying only Ak Jol entered the parliament with 48.8 percent of votes and the opposition At Meken Party, which collected 8.7 percent, did not, because did not overcome a regional threshold. The two other parties - social democrats and communists - collected 4.25 and 2.86 percents only. The Supreme Court canceled the regional threshold in the CEC interpretation, however, the latter announced the final returns on 20 December saying Ata Meken did not overcome the threshold (600 votes) in Osh City even if to count it from the voters registered in the city only. The parties qualified to enter the parliament, besides Ak Jol, became the social democrats and communists; they collected much more percent than three days ago - 5.12 and 5.05 and received 11 and 8 seats in parliament correspondingly. In total, 23 women and more than 20 young people became parliamentarians.

The previous parliament, elected in February-March 2005 for a five-year term, was dissolved by President Kurmanbek Bakiyev on 22 October 2007. Russian "Kommersant" reported on 20 December the Kyrgyz authorities dragged the communists and social democrats into parliament by the ears, because they are either loyal to the authorities or moderate opposition ones. Kabar, VN, RIA Novosti, Kommersant, 24.kg, Rosbalt, NYT

17 December, Monday:

2. THERE IS NO REGIONAL THRESHOLD IN THE WORLD. Kimmo Kiljunen, who led the team of 270 OSCE observers, said in Bishkek 17 on December that the vote "failed to meet a number of OSCE commitments." He said, "Having led the past two OSCE election observation missions in Kyrgyzstan, I am personally disappointed that there is now a backsliding in the elections process". He also added, "My native Finland has proportional representation system, but if we apply a regional threshold like in Kyrgyzstan, no party would gain seats in our parliament. I never saw it in any part of the world". Observers from the CIS and the Shanghai Cooperation Organization praised the poll the same day saying it was free and transparent. The Kyrgyz Coalition of Non-Government Organizations 'For Democracy and Civil Society' said on 17 December the elections were invalid and failed - there were pressure upon observers and unlawful restriction of their rights across the country, threats to them, stuffing ballots by local commission members, difficulties in parallel count of votes. Eurasianet, Rosbalt, AKIpress, Kommersant

3. PRESIDENT IS THE MAIN PLAYER AND THE ARBITER OF THE POLITICAL SYSTEM. The European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) considered on 14-15 December a request by former Speaker of the Kyrgyz Parliament Marat Sultanov of 15 October, and expressed its opinion from Strasbourg on 17 December that the negative elements prevail in the new Kyrgyz constitution adopted through a referendum last October, "The main thrust of the new version of the Constitution is to establish by all possible legal means the indisputable supremacy of the President with respect to all other state powers. This corresponds to an authoritarian tradition which Kyrgyzstan has tried to overcome. While the Constitution proclaims the principle of the separation of powers, the President clearly dominates and appears both as the main player and the arbiter of the political system. Few obstacles exist for the President having his tenure prolonged by changing the Constitution. Moreover, if there are no legal constraints on the powers of the President and few opportunities for an opposition to effectively make its views heard, the consequence might be that changes of power in the country will also in the future be based on revolutions and not on a peaceful and constitutional transfer of authority". The early elections are held after the previous constitution was found invalid by the Constitutional Court, "It is indeed highly unusual, if not unprecedented, that a Constitutional Court declares the full text of an acting constitution to be unconstitutional. As a general rule, constitutional courts have to take their decisions on the basis of the Constitution valid at the moment of their decision…. The Court could take this decision only if the text of the Constitution adopted on 30 December 2006 was invalid ab initio". Venice Commission, AKIpress

18 December, Tuesday:

4. COURT PAVES THE WAY FOR SOME PARTIES INTO PARLIAMENT. The Supreme Court ruled on 18 December that the Central Election Commission (CEC) of 19 November was illegal. The CEC decided that the 0.5-percent regional threshold in the parliamentary elections must be counted from total number of registered voters in the country and all the parties faced a difficult task to collect not less than 13,500 votes in each region, event in the least populated provinces. The "Ak Jol" party sued the CEC and lost the case both in the Inter-District Court of Bishkek and then in the City Court. The Supreme Court also decided on 18 December that the CEC should inform the public on the new ruling in three days. AKIpress, 24.kg, Kommersant

5. 'ATA MEKEN" DEMANDS TO RECONSIDER THE ELECTION RESULTS. The Ata Meken Party, which was barred from the parliament by the Central Election Commission in spite of collecting almost 9 percent of votes, demanded on 18 December either to recount the votes in some regions or to find the election results invalid. According to its statement, there were "mass violations and falsifications during the elections and vote counting, many of voters could not vote, their election rights were violated". The statement said only about one million voters cast ballots on 16 December while the Central Election Commission reported about 1.9 million, so, it is possible to say that 900,000 votes were added to the pro-presidential "Ak Jol" party. AKIpress

The Pervomai District Court of Bishkek was to begin considering a legal case of 'Ata Meken' against the central Election Commission (CEC), but postponed it until 23 December. The party demands finding the CEC decree of 20 December, which approved the election results. 24.kg, AKIpress

6. PROTESTERS ARE BEING ARRESTED AND TRIED. Spontaneous rally was held in front of the parliament building in Bishkek on 18 December, about 70 people gathered and protested against the results of the parliamentary elections. The same day, several youth organizations held a picket "I Do Not Believe" in front of the Central Election Commission building in Bishkek. Police detained all the 19 people, including some journalists and leaders of prominent non-governmental organizations Tolekan Ismailova and Toktaiym Umetaliyeva. Later the same day, they were released until a trial. However, the campaign "I Do Not Believe" was continued on 20 December and several its participants were detained again. The same day in the evening, the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek held its circuit session in the police department and sentenced 11 people to administrative arrest to 5 to 7 days, others were either fined or warned. In spite of the detentions, the campaign was continued in Bishkek on 21 December too with around 50 participants and about 40 people were detained again and then either were fined or warned. Leader of the "Ata Meken" Party Omurbek Tekebayev called the detentions as lawlessness and the Coalition of Non-Governmental Organizations also condemned it on 21 December. AP, AKIpress, 24.kg, Kommersant, Reuters

7. BAKIYEV GETS 'A POCKET PARLIAMENT'. Spokeswoman of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights Urdur Gunnarsdottir said from Bishkek on 18 December there were numerous irregularities during the election campaign and the voting itself in Kyrgyzstan. The authorities did not respect transparency and accountability as well as the rights of citizens to be elected. The country missed an opportunity to hold honest and fair democratic elections. According to her, the central Election Commission kept the preliminary results of the poll in secret from 18:00 of 16 December until the next morning and such a long period of no information did not add transparency to the process. Dr.Erica Marat said from Washington, D.C., the same day the Kyrgyz authorities became very smart in manipulating the election results, so, it was difficult for the observers to find all the machinations and President Kurmanbek Bakiyev received 'a pocket parliament'. VOA

20 December, Thursday:

8. ELECTION COMMISSION APPROVES AUTHORITIES OF NEW PARLIAMENTARIANS. The Central Election Commission approved on 20 December authorities of the elected 90 deputies of the new parliament and gave most of them their certificates. The pro-presidential party "Ak Jol" gained 71 seats in the parliament, the Social Democratic Party and the Party of Communists received 11 and 8 seats correspondingly. Official Representative of the "Ata Meken" Party Cholpon Jakupova was barred from the meeting and another representative Erik Iriskulbekov was beaten by police while trying to get the meeting. 24.kg

9. BAKIYEV: CHOOSE A PREMIER, WHO WOULD NOT MEDDLE IN POLITICS. The same day, on 20 December, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev received the parliamentarians elected from the Ak Jol Party and said at the meeting that the elections were one of the most honest elections in history of Kyrgyzstan. He also said, "Of course, not all participants of the elections are satisfied with the results of the elections. I am sorry that not all parties, who had a good capacity, were able to run for the elections", and added that there were some irregularities, but it is a common thins and there are some irregularities during the elections in Europe and the USA too. According to Bakiyev, the new Kyrgyz parliament has more parties that the parliaments of Kazakhstan or Russia. He also asked the parliamentarians to choose a prime minister who would not meddle in politics. AKIpress, 24.kg

10. THE US CRITICIZES KYRGYZ ELECTIONS. U.S. Department of State Spokesman Sean McCormack said in a press statement released in Washington, D.C., on 20 December about the parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan, "While we saw some promising elements such as accreditation of election observers and diverse candidate participation, our assessment concurs with many of the preliminary findings and conclusions of independent observers such as the Organization of Security and Cooperation in Europe that stated the election failed to meet many of the Kyrgyz Republic's international commitments, and was marred by significant obstacles for opposition parties and the use of government resources to benefit specific political interests". According to him, uncertainty over election rules, widespread vote count irregularities and exaggerations in voter turnout, late exclusions from voter lists, and the revision of precinct protocols prevented a more open and democratic election. AKIpress

11. KYRGYZ MODEL FOR UNIFICATION OF UKRAINE. Russian Analyst Vitaly Portnikov wrote on the site Politkom on 20 December that Kyrgyzstan becomes a model for revolution elections and only uniform parties are gathered in its parliament. If there is a regional threshold, like in Kyrgyzstan, during the elections in Russia, the country would have only two- or one-party parliament soon. And if Ukraine uses such a model, nobody in its west would vote for the eastern candidates and vice versa, so, only the Yulia Timoshenko's Bloc would seat soon in the parliament. Politkom

21 December, Friday:

12. DISSENT MEMBERS OF CEC ARE CONSIDERED OPPOSITION ONES. Three members of the Central Election Commission (CEC) - Jarkyn Bapanova, Akylbek Sariyev and Jenish Akmatov - were not allowed into their offices on 21 December. They were challenging the vote results and criticized CEC Chairwoman Klara Kabilova before. Akylbek Sariyev told the same day, "They consider us opposition now, but we just think the law should be observed strictly". Reuters, 24.kg, Kommersant

Foreign Aid this Week:

13. EUROPEAN AND WORLD BANKS HELP KYRGYZSTAN. On 21 December, the Ministry of Finance informed the World Bank allots $370,000 for development of the Accounts Chamber of Kyrgyzstan. The same day, the representative of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development said in Bishkek the bank would give $40 million to support the financial sector of Kyrgyzstan. 24.kg, Gazeta.Kz

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 16 - 22 DECEMBER 2007:

14. On 15 December, Student of the Bishkek University of Humanities Regina Fahrutdinova won the Miss Bikini 2007 title in a contest held in Turkey. 24.kg, AKIpress

15. On 17 December, Russian Analyst Vitaly Portnikov wrote on the site Politkom that the Kyrgyz president throws opposition politicians into the street instead of giving them small factions in the parliament. He himself was there before toppling previous President Askar Akayev and Akayev lost his post when tried pushing out his opponents in nowhere. Politkom

16. On 17 December, Russian "Kommersant" reported that the European Union had a single request to Kyrgyz authorities - to give opposition some seats in parliament. It was a condition for President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's visit to Brussels early in 2008. Kommersant

17. On 17 December, the World Bank and its partners released the preliminary report on comparable price levels and the relative purchasing power of currencies for 146 world countries. The cheapest economies are Tajikistan, Ethiopia, Gambia, Kyrgyz Republic, and Bolivia and the most expensive ones are Iceland, Denmark, Switzerland, Norway, and Ireland. AKIpress

18. On 17 December, Minister of Education and Science Ishengul Boljurova and South Korean Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Li Keng Yel opened the Sejong Institute of Korean Language at the Bishkek University of Humanities. AKIpress

19. On 18 December, Kubatbek Baibolov of the opposition Ata Meken Party said they have audio recordings of the meetings held 2-3 days prior to the elections when the authorities instructed leaders of local election commission how to secure victory of the Ak Jol Party. 24.kg

20. On 18 December, about thousand people held a protest meeting in the Ton District of the Issyk-Kul Province protesting the rigged results of the parliamentary elections and blocked the Balykchy-Karakol highway for an hour. 24.kg, AKIpress

21. On 18 December, Erica Marat wrote on the site Eurasia Daily Monitor about the protests in Kyrgyzstan, "It is unlikely that the scale of these protests will match those in February-March 2005". However, "Should Bakiyev refuse to accept at least some of the opposition’s demands, he will only trigger stronger consolidation among the opposition". EDM

22. On 18-19 December, the Soros-Kyrgyzstan Foundation held in Bishkek the international conference on transformation of the state and the society in the Central Asian states. Oasis

23. On 19 December, Kyrgyz people marked Kurman-Ait - Eid al-Adha, or the Feast of Sacrifice, after which the Hajj, or Pilgrimage to Mecca begins. 24.kg

24. On 20 December, Tajik Journalist Fahriddin Kholbek wrote on the site Asia Plus about the Kyrgyz elections that after the fall of Kyrgyz Island of Democracy, a new phase of single-party development began in the CIS. According to him, previous Kyrgyz President Askar Akayev was wrong accusing the West of his toppling. More likely, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization was behind it. Asia Plus

25. On 20 December, Ata Meken Party members began hunger strike in Bishkek and Osh cities as well as in some other regions in protest against the rigged results of the parliamentary elections. AKIpress, 24.kg

26. On 20 December, youth organizations picketed the building of the National Broadcasting Corporation and gave all the people entering the building noodles as returning back to the corporation the yarn stories it fed the people for two and a half years. 24.kg, AKIpress

27. On 20 December, US Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Marie Yovanovich and State Secretary of the Kyrgyz Ministry of Culture Murataly Bektenaliyev opened at the Kurenkeev Music College in Bishkek The Center of American Music. AKIpress, 24.kg

28. On 21 December, new parliament held its first session in Bishkek, the parliamentarians were sworn in at it. Then they decided to interrupt the session until Monday and to hold negotiations between the factions about a nominee to the post of the speaker. 24.kg

29. On 21 December, Ombudsman Tursunbai Bakir uulu, who is also chairman of the ErK Party and ran for parliament, said the security services were behind dissemination of controversial leaflets against the party during the election campaign. 24.kg

30. On 21 December, the World Organization Against Torture (OMCT) reported from Geneva that an independent commission headed by Aziza Abdurasulova had concluded that Bektemir Akunov, member of the United Front 'For Decent Future of Kyrgyzstan, did not commit suicide in Naryn on 14 April 2007. He participated in a hunger strike in Bishkek from 5 to 10 April, was arrested on 13 April and found dead in the police custody. OMCT

С уважением, Нарын АЙЫП.

PS: Due to Christmas and New Year holidays, the next edition of Kyrgyz Weekly would be issued late in January.

Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 9 - 15 DECEMBER 2007
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Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

Articles by the author on parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan:
В парламент Кыргызстана пройдут не более пяти партий (26 November).
Manipulating the Fine Print (5 December)
Правление Бакиева только начинается (7 December).
Кыргызстан выбирает более сговорчивый парламент (16 December).

1. One of the leaders of an opposition party has to leave the country.
2. Human rights defenders and state authorities in Central Asia are alienated.
3. Doctor Nazaraliyev calls to boycott the parliamentary elections
4. Registration of a candidate to parliament is cancelled after media reports.
5. President Bakiyev: too early for a parliamentary republic in Kyrgyzstan.
6. There could be protests after the polls.
7. 'Day of Silence' in Kyrgyzstan in spite of protests.
8. More than 600 observers to monitor the Kyrgyz elections.
9. European Union helps Kyrgyzstan.
10. Also in the week of 9 - 15 December 2007…

8 December, Saturday:

1. ONE OF THE LEADERS OF AN OPPOSITION PARTY HAS TO LEAVE THE COUNTRY. Executive Secretary of the Social democratic Party Edil Baisalov was detained on 8 December while crossing the Kyrgyz-Kazakh border by Kyrgyz border guards, but was released after Western diplomatic representatives intervened into the process. He left the country to avoid unjust trial and possible imprisonment after posting a sample ballot on his personal blog on 3 December and being accused of impeding work of the electoral commission and causing large material losses to the state. The commission destroyed all the 2.7 million ballots and reprinted them after it. On 11 December, the Prosecutor General Office asked all the law enforcement bodies of the country to find Executive Secretary of the Social Democratic Party Edil Baisalov, who did not come to give evidence on an official request. 24.kg, Kabar, EDM

10 December, Monday:

2. HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS AND STATE AUTHORITIES IN CENTRAL ASIA ARE ALIENATED. OSCE's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) released in Warsaw on 10 December, the International Human Rights Day, the book entitled "Human Rights Defenders in the OSCE Region: Our Collective Conscience". It is said in it that human rights defenders and state authorities in Eastern Europe and Central Asia are increasingly alienated and activists face serious threats against themselves and their work, "Human rights defenders face serious and persistent threats to themselves and their work as they exercise their right to advocate the effective realization of human rights in accordance with international obligations. Russian journalist Anna Politkovskaya, Turkish writer Hrant Dink, Turkmen journalist and human rights activist Ogulsapar Muradova and Bosnian human rights campaigner Dusko Kondor are among those who paid with their lives for defending human rights in their countries. Some human rights defenders were tortured or ill-treated by police in Uzbekistan, some were attacked with stones by unknown assailants in Kyrgyzstan; thrown down stairs in Serbia; beaten on the street in Uzbekistan.

The same day, a round table discussion on constitutional and human rights issues was held in Bishkek. 24.kg, ODIHR, Reuters, EurasiaNet

12 December, Wednesday:

3. DOCTOR NAZARALIYEV CALLS TO BOYCOTT THE PARLIAMENTARY ELECTIONS. Doctor Jenishbek Nazaraliyev, who was number one in the election list of the Asaba Party announced in Bishkek on 12 December he dropped from the election campaign saying the results of the Sunday poll would be falsified by the authorities in any case. "It's pointless to put efforts into the campaign knowing you will lose. If I play the game offered by the authorities, I will betray the Kyrgyz. I urge my compatriots to vote against all parties," he said. However, other members of the party did not support him. Police said on 14 December they detained several young people in Bishkek who disseminated leaflets with the Nazaraliyev's appeals to boycott the elections. 24.kg, Kommersant

4. REGISTRATION OF A CANDIDATE TO PARLIAMENT IS CANCELLED AFTER MEDIA REPORTS. The news agency 24.kg reported on 12 December that number one in the party ticket of the Social Democratic Party Omurbek Babanov has a Kazakh citizenship and published on 14 December documents on it. Babanov himself responded on 14 December saying he wrote an appeal and returned his Kazakh passport to authorities of the city of Taraz in 1998, and presented a letter that he is not a Kazakh citizen, signed by a deputy interior minister of Kazakhstan. However, the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek ruled later on 15 December, just 7.5 hours prior the voting begins, to exclude Babanov from the list. "Ordinary Kyrgyz citizen Sergei Stupak" sued Babanov. 24.kg, RIA Novosti

13 December, Thursday:

5. PRESIDENT BAKIYEV: TOO EARLY FOR A PARLIAMENTARY REPUBLIC IN KYRGYZSTAN. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appealed to the nation via the National TV on 13 December urging people to come to polling stations on Sunday to vote in the parliamentary elections and answering questions live. He assured the elections would be free and fair unlike the previous one, and the administrative resources would not be used due to it is not necessary. He also accused the opposition of plotting a coup stirring people up against the state and said he is ready working with a constructive opposition, which should form a shadow cabinet and make suggestion in constructive manner. Kabar, 24.kg, DPA, Earthtimes

14 December, Friday:

6. THERE COULD BE PROTESTS AFTER THE POLLS. Former Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev told journalists in Bishkek on 14 December, "There will certainly be fraud" during the early parliamentary election on 16 December. According to him, local authorities in the country are competing each other to get larger vote percentage for the pro governmental candidates . However, he said, "We will not watch idly in case of lawlessness... A number of parties are preparing protests". He added, many government critics threatened to take to the streets, as they have repeatedly in recent years, if authorities try to falsify the results of the ballot, because a lot of activists across the country were subjected to intimidation during the campaign. Atambayev was sacked on 28 November without explanations. 24.kg, IHT, Reuters

15 December, Saturday:

7. 'DAY OF SILENCE' IN KYRGYZSTAN IN SPITE OF PROTESTS. The election campaign stopped in Kyrgyzstan since 8 a.m. on 15 December, a day ahead of the poll. However, the Ata Meken party appealed on 14 December that all the pre-election processes must be shortened three times and the campaign too must be stopped 8 hours before the polls begin. Because the election is an early one. Due to it is a snap election, the authorities shortened the campaign period especially. In addition to it, Ata Meken says the new ballot papers, printed after the first package was destroyed completely, were printed again on the ordinary paper and without wither proper protection or official decision on it.

16 December, Sunday:

8. MORE THAN 600 OBSERVERS TO MONITOR THE KYRGYZ ELECTIONS. Kyrgyzstan holds early parliamentary election on 16 December, for the first time, all the 90 deputies (more than in the previous parliament by 20) are elected on party tickets. The voters choose among the 12 parties, they can also vote "against all". The previous parliament, elected in February-March 2005 for a five-year term, was dissolved by President Kurmanbek Bakiyev on 22 October 2007. In all, 2.274 polling stations have been formed, including 38 in the 23 other countries - 11 in Russia, three in Germany and the US each, two in Turkey. Over 600 international observers would monitor the polls. The results of the poll would be shown immediately at a screen in a special information center as well as on the site of the Central Election Commission (http://www.shailoo.gov.kg/?tp=tx&id=342), which would hold briefings at 10:00, 13:00, 16:00, 19:00, 22:00 and 24:00, Bishkek time. Kabar, KW, RIA Novosti, BBC

Foreign Aid this Week:

9. EUROPEAN UNION HELPS KYRGYZSTAN. On 10 December, the European Commission representatives said in Bishkek the commission allocates €9 million to Kyrgyzstan for the Sector Program in Social Protection and Public Finance Management in 2007-2008. On 14 December, the European Union informed it would give Kyrgyzstan and other Central Asian states €5 million for development of the local business associations in four years. 24.kg

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 9 - 15 DECEMBER 2007:

10. On 10 December, Director of the Adilet non-governmental organization Cholpon Jakupova said the National TV and Radio Corporation did not intend implementing court decision and provide the Ata Meken party with air time in the evening. The district court of Bishkek ruled on 7 December that the corporation must do it and the Supreme Court upheld the decision on 13 December. 24.kg

11. On 10 December, department head in the Ministry of Emergencies Anarkul Aitaliyev said 87 people suffered from 202 extreme situations in the country in 11 months of the year and 10 of them died. The total damage was 315.63 million soms, and 69 of the situations were natural calamities. Kabar,

12. On 11 December, Reuters reported that a big win of the Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's Ak Jol party in the 16 December parliamentary elections would tighten Bakiyev's "grip on power - a move welcomed by many voters, wary after two years of political unrest. Bakiyev's party, set up just before the vote, says it sees Vladimir Putin's Russia as a guiding model". Reuters, WP

13. On 11 December, the inter-district court of Bishkek ruled the Social Democratic Party must reimburse 20,02 million soms ($570,000) of the Central Election Commission's expenses to destroy election ballots printing new ones and to pay additional 189,000 soms as a state due. Kabar, 24.kg, Kommersant

14. On 11 December, President Kurmabek Bakiyev answered questions of Kyrgyz citizens on a phone hot line organized from the editorial office of the "Vecherny Bishkek" daily. Among other thing, Bakiyev said it is early for Kyrgyzstan to introduce a parliamentary form of governance and the events in Ukraine prove it. Kabar, AKIpress

15. On 11 December, the international conference Bishkek+5: Problems and Prospects of Sustainable Development of Mountainous States was held in Bishkek. Kabar, 24.kg

16. On 12 December, the EurasiaNet site reported, "President Bakiyev and his allies are gambling with their country’s future. They are betting that consolidation of power will provide the political stability for developing democracy and prosperity over the long term. In their opinion, that long-term stability can only be achieved by marginalizing political forces that aren’t under their control". EurasiaNet

17. On 12 December, the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute in Washington, DC, held a panel titled "Kyrgyzstan's South: Zone of Problem or Potential?", which came to the conclusion that the parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan on 16 December are more likely to experience difficulties in the southern part of the country than in the North due to weakness of political parties and the media outlets in the South. Eurasianet

18. On 12 December, security officials detained in the Naryn Province three young people who disseminated leaflets and CDs with rules how to vote according to the Islamic principles. They also agitated against secular institutions. Kabar

19. On 12 December, the Institute for War and Peace Reporting wrote that 98 per cent of the people in Kyrgyzstan would vote for the presidential Ak Jol party at the Sunday parliamentary elections if there where there no observers. IWPR

20. On 13 December, Chairman of the Ata-Meken Party Omurbek Tekebayev said in Bishkek the six opposition organizations of the country, including the parties Ata Meken, Ar Namys and Asaba, would unite in a single bloc to oppose establishing monopoly in politics, economy and media. Former deputy of Parliament Kubatbek Baibolov said at the same meeting with journalists, "What's happening is not an election, but the appointment of government loyalists as parliament members". 24.kg, Regnum, IHT

21. On 13 December, Arkady Dubnov, a Moscow-based Central Asia expert, said in an interview with The Associated Press the opposition parties may have a hard time clearing the 0.5-percent regional threshold in the President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's home region, southern Jalal-Abad. The AP also reported, "Few international monitors expect Sunday's election to be free or fair". IHT

22. On 13 December, the web-site of the Central Election Commission was hacked and the were the words "This site has been hacked by Dream of Estonian organization" on it. CEC, 24.kg

23. On 13 December, Director General of the Kyrgyzgas Company Salamat Aitikeev said Uzbekistan could raise gas prices in 2008. Kyrgyzstan buys about 900 million cubic meters of natural gas annually and paid $100 per 1,000 cubic meters in 2007 and Tashkent considers even $130 in 2008 would not be enough. Kabar, 24.kg, Itar-Tass

24. On 13-14 December, the Committee on Migration and Employment organized in Bishkek an international conference together with the OSCE and UN on fighting human trafficking. It was said at it Kyrgyz authorities stopped in 2007 62 cases of trafficking in people liberating 20 victims and 30 criminal cases were filed. 24.kg

25. On 14 December, the OSCE's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) said its Election Observation Mission deployed to monitor the 16 December parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan, would announce its preliminary findings and conclusions at a news conference on Monday, 17 December. ODIHR

26. On 14 December, Akyl Kuduev, leader of the Kyrgyz Diaspora in Samara, Russia, said there are at least 5,000 Kyrgyz living in the region, however, the Kyrgyz Central Election Commission sent them 3,000 ballots only. The commission admitted it released only about 29,000 ballot papers for use abroad. IWPR

27. On 15 December, the Russian English-language TV Channel RussiaToday reported the election in Kyrgyzstan "looks like a one horse race" - "there are few signs of tension or even interest from the public, because almost everybody there seems to believe that one party has it all sewn". RussiaToday

28. On 15 December, "The International Herald Tribune reported that the President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's party Ak Jol could fail to overcome the 0.5-percent regional threshold in the northern Talas region, where he has little support. IHT

29. On 15 December, Chairwoman of the central Election Commission Klara Kabilova said in an interview with the Russian agency RIA Novosti that the commission became a state in the state during the election campaign because the parliament was dissolved and the members of government were acting ones only. According to her, she does not know whether there was another similar case in the world in history. RIA Novosti

30. On 15 December, "USA Today" reported, "By 2006, 57 percent of Kyrgyzstan's imports came from China -and only 15 percent from Russia". According to it, cheap Chinese goods have turned many poor Central Asians into consumers, however, dependence on Chinese products slows the growth of local industries. USA Today

Regards, Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 2 - 8 DECEMBER 2007
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Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. A candidate barred from election over blog.
2. Kyrgyz police does not exclude involvement of Uzbek security services in murder of Sayipov.
3. Most Kyrgyz are satisfied with the living conditions
4. It is the right of people to throw off governments - Niyazov.
5. Uzbek security services pose a threat to Kyrgyzstan - Ponomaryov.
6. World Bank helps Kyrgyz developers.
7. Also in the week of 2 - 8 December 2007…

December, 4 Tuesday:

1. A CANDIDATE BARRED FROM ELECTION OVER BLOG. Central Election Commission (CEC) decided on 4 December to destroy all the prepared 2.717 million ballots just printed and were ready to be sent to regions, because Executive Secretary of the Social Democratic Party Edil Baisalov, who attended the process of printing the ballots on 3 December, took a picture of the sample ballot and posted it on his blog saying the ballots were not protected enough and could faked easily because were printed on ordinary writing paper. The commission also decided to exclude Baisalov from the party ticket of social democrats and to sue the party to bear all the expenses of reprinting the ballots. CEC said, according to the laws, nobody should publish the ballot papers until the election day and its main protection was that nobody should have seen it until 8 a.m. of 16 December. The General Prosecutor Office said on 6 December it initiated a criminal proceeding against Baisalov under the clauses "Causing large material damage to the state" and "Preventing the operations of the Central Election Commission".

Baisalov said on 4 December, his disqualification was an attempt by the authorities to stifle critical voices ahead of the vote, "I criticized the quality of the ballot papers. They ... have turned me into a scapegoat". Head of the Judicial Clinic Adilet Cholpon Jakupova said in an interview with Deutsche Welle on 4 December there is no prohibition to publish picture of election ballots in any laws and the candidate to parliament could be excluded from the party ticket either by his own or the party's decision only. Russian Expert Arkady Dubnov said on 6 December that the picture in Internet cannot be a base to print fake ballots, however, if it could, it must be a failure of the authorities, not of Baisalov. Kabar. 24.kg, BPC, Reuters, DW, AKIpress

December, 5 Wednesday:

2. KYRGYZ POLICE DOES NOT EXCLUDE INVOLVEMENT OF UZBEK SECURITY SERVICES IN MURDER OF SAYIPOV. Department Head in the Ministry of Internal Affairs Melis Turganbayev told journalists in Bishkek on 5 December the law enforcement officials possess pictures of the two young people who are suspected having connection to the murder of Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov in Osh City on 24 October - they were around the killing site for two days before the murder. Police also detained an owner of the firing arm used to murder Sayipov. The investigators also do not exclude that security services of neighboring Uzbekistan could be behind the killing, however, the version is not yet perfected. In addition to it, Uzbek journalist Nosir Zakir could have been involved. 24.kg, BBC

3. MOST KYRGYZ ARE SATISFIED WITH THE LIVING CONDITIONS. The European Bank of Reconstruction and Development presented in Bishkek on 5 December the Transition Report on Kyrgyzstan, prepared jointly with the World Bank, according to which the GDP growth in the country is expected at 7.5 percent in 2007. It is said in the report that Kyrgyz middle class makes up 4 percent of the country population, and among the other CIS countries, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan only have less. According to a survey conducted, 58 percent of Kyrgyz are satisfied with the current living standards, it is more that in Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and some other CIS countries. The same time, 60 percent of surveyed said their living standards worsened compared to 1989, 50 percent support market economy and only 23 percent do not like the transition to market economy. 24.kg, Kabar, AKIpress

December, 6 Thursday:

4. IT IS THE RIGHT OF PEOPLE TO THROW OFF GOVERNMENTS - NIYAZOV. Former Secretary of the Security Council Miroslav Niyazov said in an interview with the "De-Facto" newspaper on 6 December that the Kyrgyz people are people who made a revolution in 2005 and expelled a president from the country and the incumbent Kyrgyz authorities make big mistake if think they can deceive the people for a long time. Niyazov gave the words about the people from the US Declaration of Independence, "When a long train of abuses and usurpations.… evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security", saying it is not an appeal to revolution but an appeal to government to be a responsible one. De-Facto, USHistory

December, 7 Friday:

5. UZBEK SECURITY SERVICES POSE A THREAT TO KYRGYZSTAN - PONOMARYOV. Vitaly Ponomaryov of the Moscow-based Memorial Human Rights Center said on 7 December a special atmosphere of fear is forced up in the Southern Kyrgyzstan after the murder of Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov in Osh on 24 October. According to him, an Uzbek trace suspicion in the murder has a ground - Sayipov was accused in the Uzbek press for several months before the killing and the accusations were corresponded to the clauses of the Uzbek Criminal Code exactly. Ponomaryov also said the Kyrgyz authorities should understand at last that not journalists or human rights activists but the security services of the neighboring totalitarian state pose a real threat to state security of Kyrgyzstan. CentrAsia

Foreign Aid this Week:

6. WORLD BANK HELPS KYRGYZ DEVELOPERS. On 4 December, representatives of the World Bank confirmed at a meeting with deputies of the Bishkek City Assembly that the bank would grant $12 million for infrastructure development of the new construction areas around the cities of Bishkek and Osh. Kabar, 24.kg

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 2 - 8 DECEMBER 2007:

7. On 2 December, "The New York Times" reported, "For the journalists, human rights workers and Uzbek opposition members living in southern Kyrgyzstan, given the brutal and public nature of Mr. Alisher Saipov's shooting, the consensus is that he was killed to send a message to anyone interfering - 'We can get anyone, anytime, anywhere'." NYT

8. On 3 December, Director of the human rights center Citizens against Corruption Tolekan Ismailova said members of the Central Election Commission deleted themselves some data on the 16 members of the election list of Rodina Party and then the commission refused to register it due to lack of information. 24.kg

9. On 3 December, several political parties expressed a vote of no confidence to the Central Election Commission saying it breaches the constitution and the Election Code itself. The same did members of the round table 'We Are for Fair Election' held in Bishkek on 7 December. 24.kg

10. On 3 December, Russian Expert Arkady Dubnov said in an interview with Deutsche Welle that the pro-presidential party Ak Jol and the Party of Communists as well as not more than two other parties would receive seats in the new Kyrgyz parliament. And the Party Turan could become 'a system opposition' in the parliament. DW

11. On 3 December, the EurasiaNet site reported, "Foreign donors have been pouring money into helping Central Asian republics bolster boundary control infrastructures". However, it has "unintended consequences. A major flaw is that the aid programs do not give sufficient attention and resources to corralling corrupt practices". In addition to it, "expanded border management systems enable repressive governments to become more efficient in stifling political and economic freedom". EurasiaNet

12. On 3 December, the International Day of Disabled Persons, the Ministry of Labor our and Social Development said there are now 110,870 disabled people in Kyrgyzstan. 24.kg

13. On 3-4 December, Vice Prime Minister Dosbol Nur uulu took part in the first Asia-Pacific Water Summit in Japan and called on the Central Asian states to take part in maintenance of the hydro power stations in the region. Kabar

14. On 4 December, the Supreme Court upheld a ruling of the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek, which approved the decision of the Central Election Commission to bar the Taza Koom, Zamandash and Green parties from the elections. It also rejected an appeal of the Greens to cancel the registration of the Ak Jol party list on 5 December. 24.kg, AKIpress

15. On 4 December, the EurasiaNet site reported, Kyrgyzstan is not interested in driving out the US base from its territory - the USA is providing about $150 million a year in aid, and they have to expect that if the air base leaves some of that will disappear, and Russia and China won't be able to compensate for it. EurasiaNet

16. On 4 December, Minister of Finance Akylbek Zhaparov said at a meeting with President Kurmanbek Bakiyev that the state budget for 2008 would be about 43,000 millions soms, or more than $1,000 million for the first time. According to the minister, salaries of state employees would be increased by 30 percent starting 1 January 2008. Kabar, 24.kg

On 5 December, the Institute for War and Peace Reporting wrote that the Ak Jol Party will probably gain more seats in the Kyrgyz parliament than any of its rivals, but it will not be able to repeat the landslide successes the Russian United Russia or Kazakh Nur Otan have enjoyed". IWPR

17. On 5 December, the Central Election Commission said the votes of the Kyrgyz citizens living and working abroad would not be taken into account while counting the 0.5-percent regional threshold each party must overcome in each region of Kyrgyzstan. 24.kg

18. On 5 December, the CIS Inter-State Statistical Committee informed that ordinary people make a 25.8-percent contributions into the fixed capital investment in Kyrgyzstan while the enterprises themselves make 40.3-percent contribution and foreign investors have a 5.3-percent share. 24.kg

19. On 5 December, Voice of America reported the film Genghis Khan, shot by Hollywood Film Director Ken Annakin in Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan and China in the 1990s, has not yet been released due to its Italian producers went bankrupt. VoA

20. On 6 December, Erica Marat wrote in an article posted on the site Eurasian Daily Monitor that the Kyrgyz opposition parties "are more consolidated today compared with previous years, but their leaders still pursue individual ambitions and thus weaken the opposition's ability to affect the president", and the case of Edil Baisalov "revealed its efforts to use minor cases for major actions". EDM

21. On 6 December, the Kyrgyz bank ATF Bank Kyrgyzstan was included in the list of 100 most progressive developed banks in the CIS, the actives of which is more than $100 million. Kommersant

22. On 6 December, President of the Sergey Radonezhsky and Manas Magnanimous Foundation Igor Trofimov told journalists in Bishkek notorious criminal boss Ryspek Akmatbayev is alive and currently resides in Russia, "Akmatbayev was not murdered. He was just seized and moved by our foundation. We need him here to press some corrupt officials". 24.kg

23. On 7 December, the opposition party Ata Meken won a case against the National TV and Radio Corporation at the Lenin District Court of Bishkek. It accused the corporation of not providing equal opportunities to all parties in airing the party election materials. Based on the court ruling, the Central Election Commission issued a reprimand to the corporation the same day. Kabar, 24.kg

24. On 7 December, head of the presidential administration Medet Sadyrkulov said at the public hearings in Bishkek on tortures, "Kyrgyzstan shall ratify the Facultative Protocol to the UN Convention Against Tortures and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment", which establishes a system of permanent visits to places of confinement by international observers, and that President Kurmanbek Bakiyev set a task to eradicate tortures in the country and takes personal control over the issue. 24.kg, Kabar

25. On 7 December, Director of the Financial Market Regulation Service Yuruslan Toichubekov told journalists in Bishkek that the national telephone company Kyrgyztelecom is worth $52.5 million only officially while its real price is more than $500 million and the same is with other state enterprises too. For instance, the national rail road company Kyrgyz Temir Jolu is worth $11.7 million officially while its market price is $535 million. 24.kg

26. On 7 December, the Institute for War and Peace Reporting wrote that in the town of Kok Jangak in southern Kyrgyzstan, "children as young as ten are digging coal in treacherous mineshafts…. The mine itself is not a professionally-made shaft, but a hole dug out of the earth in the hillside. There are no props to hold up the roof…. Any moment, the walls might cave in and bury the little miner". IWPR

27. On 7 December, Eldar Djangirov from Kyrgyzstan, who immigrated to the US in 1998, was nominated for Grammy in the best contemporary jazz album category. Kansas City Star

28. On 8 December, the congress of Kyrgyz journalists, organized by the Soros-Kyrgyzstan Foundation and the Institute of Media Representative, adopted the Ethic Code of Journalist. 24.kg

29. On 8 December, the Agency for Tourism said it plans holding annual world congresses of Santa Clauses and would organize a festive start of Santa from Kyrgyzstan on Christmas Eve. Experts of the Swedish consulting firm SWECO announced on 4 December that Santa should start from Kyrgyzstan to achieve the most efficient around-the-world trip to distribute Christmas gifts to children and to visit 2,500 million homes. Kabar, AP, Ytro

30. Appointments and dismissals: on 6 December, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appointed former Minister of Emergencies Janysh Rustenbekov Kyrgyz ambassador to Kazakhstan replacing Jumagul Saadanbekov. Kabar,

Regards, Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 25 NOVEMBER - 1 DECEMBER 2007
_____________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. Election campaign starts in Kyrgyzstan.
2. Among the CIS countries, the life is worst in Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.
3. Premier Atambayev resigns.
4. Atambayev was sacked to consolidate administrative resources.
5. Kyrgyzstan: Bakiyev Stirring up a Hornet's Nest? - Stratfor Commentary.
6. Kyrgyz airlines are banned in the European Union.
7. Support to Moscow could have could have consequences for Kyrgyzstan.
8. Donors support civil society and the health care system in Kyrgyzstan.
9. Also in the week Of 25 November - 1 December 2007…

25 November, Sunday:

1. ELECTION CAMPAIGN STARTS IN KYRGYZSTAN. The Central Election Commission ended on 25 November registration of the party tickets for the early parliamentary election to be held on 16 December. Twelve parties would participate in it: Aalam, Ak Jol, Ar-Namys, Asaba, Ata Meken, Erkin Kyrgyzstan, Erkindik, New Power, Turan, Voice of People, as well as Social Democrats and the Party of Communists. Election campaign started on 26 November. Fifty parties had initially expressed the intention to take part in the elections, only 22 of them submitted documents for registration in time and the commission barred 10 parties from the election: New Times, Rodina, Taza Koom, Tynchtyk, Zamandash, as well as the Communist Party, Party of Farmers, Party of Afghan Veterans and Participants of Other Local Military Conflicts, Party of Veterans and Youth and Greens. Kabar, Itar-Tass, 24.kg

27 November, Tuesday:

2. AMONG THE CIS COUNTRIES, THE LIFE IS WORST IN TAJIKISTAN AND KYRGYZSTAN. UN Development Program released on 27 November the Human Development Index, which rates the human development in 177 countries of the world. The best life conditions are created in Island followed by Norway, Australia, Canada and Ireland and the worst are Sierra Leone (the last 177th place). Burkina Faso (176th), Guinea Bissau (175th), Nigeria (174th), and Mali (173rd). Due to lack of reliable information, 17 countries, such as Iraq and Afghanistan, were not included in the report.

Among the former Soviet republics, the best are Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia, which occupied the 43rd, 44th and 45th places in the world correspondingly. The are followed by Belarus (64) and Russia (67), and these five states are in the group of the developed countries The rest ten CIS republics are in a group of countries with an average development: Kazakhstan (73), Ukraine (76), Armenia (83), Georgia (96), Turkmenistan (109), Moldova (111), Uzbekistan (113), Kyrgyzstan (116), and Tajikistan on the 122nd place. Compared to the last year, the USA dropped from the 8th to the 12th place. Japan is the 8th, France 10th, Great Britain 16th, South Korea 26th. China 81st and Turkey is the 94th. The longest life expectancy is in Japan – 82.3 years, and the shortest is in Zimbabwe – 40.5 years. AOL

28 November, Wednesday:

3. PREMIER ATAMBAYEV RESIGNS. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev sacked Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev on 28 November in a move condemned by the opposition as an attempt to tighten his grasp on power ahead of a snap parliamentary election. Atambayev's supporters said the surprise sacking was part of Bakiyev's maneuvering to keep control ahead of the 15 December vote, they accused the president of trying to manipulate parliamentary elections. However, Bakiyev and Atambayev parted on a good note and the president awarded the former premier with an order First Vice Premier Iskenderbek Aidaraliyev, who was appointed to the post a day earlier, stepped in as acting prime minister. Kyrgyz Expert Dmitry Orlov called the resignation as a serious mistake by the president, because Atambayev was a single premier in the history of independent Kyrgyzstan who worked really. Reuters, RIA Novosti, Kommersant, Regnum

4. ATAMBAYEV WAS SACKED TO CONSOLIDATE ADMINISTRATIVE RESOURCES. Deutsche Welle reported on 28 November about the resignation of the Kyrgyz Premier, that the issue is linked with the forthcoming parliamentary elections. Almaz Atambayev was forced to resign just two days after the Central Election Commission ended the registration of party tickets for the elections and Atambayev now is not able to be included in his party's list. He leads the Social Democratic Party and local authorities were in frustration before - what the party for to use their administrative resources - either for the pro-presidential Ak Jol Party or for social democrats. The previous day, Bakiyev appointed his envoy to the CIS and EurAsEC Ishengul Boljurova minister of education and science instead of Kanybek Osmonaliyev, because the votes of students are also very important for the authorities. DW

5. KYRGYZSTAN: BAKIYEV STIRRING UP A HORNET'S NEST? - STRATFOR COMMENTARY. The American Stratfor Center reported on 28 November about the resignation of Almaz Atambayev, the Kyrgyz Premier, "Atambayev and his faction are the one thing preventing Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev from having full control over the government…. There are a few areas where Bakiyev -- freed from concerns about the government -- could stir up some trouble…. One such issue is that the United States and Russia hold air bases in Kyrgyzstan…. Russia is eager to resume its pressure regarding the U.S. base once Bakiyev takes control, and has levers other than cash to use against Bishkek. But another large concern looming is that typically, when Bishkek is at least semi-consolidated, it tends to turn its eyes on the militants who live in the Kyrgyz portion of the Ferghana Valley and use it as a refuge…. Kyrgyzstan could now move to counter the militants once again, though since it is not really capable of carrying out operations in the Fergana Valley it most likely will just stir up a hornet's nest". Stratfor

6. KYRGYZ AIRLINES ARE BANNED IN THE EUROPEAN UNION. The European Commission released on 28 November its sixth updated list of airlines banned in the European Union. The Commission has cancelled the ban imposed on the last list (11 September 2007) upon Blue Wing Airlines from Surinam together with the operating restrictions imposed on Pakistan International Airlines. EU Transport Commissioner Jacques Barrot said the airlines had taken "rapid and sound corrective action to comply with safety standards."

However, there are blanket bans on all airlines from Indonesia, Equatorial Guinea, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Swaziland and Congo. The list of banned Kyrgyz companies include: 1) Air Central Asia, 2) Air Manas, 3) Asia Alpha Airways, 4) Avia Traffic Company, 5) Bistair-Fez Bishkek, 6) Botir Avia, 7) Click Airways, 8) Dames, 9) Eastok Avia, 10) Esen Air, 11) Galaxy Air, 12) Golden Rule Airlines, 13) Intal Avia, 14) Itek Air, 15) Kyrgyz Trans Avia, 16) Kyrgyzstan Airlines, 17) Max Avia, 18) Ohs Avia, 19) S Group Aviation, 20) Sky Gate International Aviation, 21) Sky Way Air, 22) Tenir Airlines, and 23) Trast Aero.

There were two more companies, blacklisted on 11 September - Kyrgyzstan and World Wing Aviation. Most likely, they are not existed now. Most of the companies are registered in Kyrgyzstan only, operating outside of the country. In March 2006, when the Community formed the first its 'black list', there were two air companies, registered in Kyrgyzstan - Phoenix Aviation and Reem Air. Abhaber, BusinessWeek, IHT, Avionews, EC.Europa.EU,

29 November, Thursday:

7. SUPPORT TO MOSCOW COULD HAVE CONSEQUENCES FOR KYRGYZSTAN. The annual meeting of OSCE member-state foreign ministers was held in Madrid on 29-30 November. Members of the Collective Security Treaty Organization - Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan - introduced a draft document in Madrid called "Basic Principles for Organizing the Observation of National Elections", which could severely limit the authority of the observers' mission of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR). Moscow and its allies suggested that the size of the observers' mission be reduced to 50, instead of the 400-600 observers the OSCE sends to elections in the CIS now. The drafters also want to prohibit the observers to comment on the campaigning and elections until the official results have been announced by the central elections commission. Now they can comment as soon as the polls have closed.

The OSCE meeting failed to approve a joint political declaration. U.S. Undersecretary of State Nicholas Burns, who is heading the American delegation in Madrid, said, "We will oppose the Russian proposal, which would weaken and perhaps even cripple ODIHR. We will not support any compromise proposal that would be negative or problematic or damaging to ODIHR". He also said that support to the Moscow stand by Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan could have consequences. It also was decided in Madrid that Kazakhstan will chair OSCE in 2010, not in 2009, as Astana and Moscow demanded, - after Finland in 2008 and Greece in 2009.

Foreign Minister Ednan Karabayev of Kyrgyzstan took part in the summit. On 28 November, he met in Madrid with Secretary-General of the OSCE Marc Perrin de Brichambaut discussing aspects of bilateral cooperation. In frame of the summit, the Kyrgyz minister had meetings with his counterparts Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Karel Schwarzenberg of Germany and the Czech Republic, discussing establishment in Bishkek the international water academy, as well as with state-secretaries Hans Winkler and Teija Tiilikainen of the Austria and Finnish foreign ministries. Karabayev also chaired a meeting of the CSTO ministers of foreign affairs. Kommersant, Kabar, 24.kg, M&C, RIA Novosti, GazetaRu

Foreign Aid this Week:

8. DONORS SUPPORT CIVIL SOCIETY AND THE HEALTH CARE SYSTEM IN KYRGYZSTAN. On 29 November, European Commission Charge d'Affaires Jörg Volker Ketelsen said the commission allots €1,2 million for Kyrgyzstan in 2007-2008 for the public sector developments. The government said on 30 November, the international donors give in 2008 $16.5 million to support the health care program Manas Taalimi. 24.kg

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 25 NOVEMBER - 1 DECEMBER 2007:

9. On 25 November, early in the morning, the office of the Mezon TV company in Osh City was robbed. Among the video camera and computers, video clips of some political parties prepared for the elections were stolen. The damage is estimated about $7.300. CJES

On 26 November, Chairwoman of the Constitutional Court Cholpon Bayekova suspended her authorities due to taking part in the parliamentary elections. So did Ombudsman Tursunbai Bakir uulu the same day. Kabar, RIA Novosti

10. On 26 November, the Institute for War and Peace Reporting wrote, "The revival in political activity in the run up to elections has not resulted in the emergence of strong parties". IWPR

11. On 26 November, Member of the Central Election Commission Akylbek Sariyev said about the 0.5-percent regional threshold that the political parties could block each other in the different regions using it. The government could use it against the opposition and just the opposite too. BPC

12. On 26 November, Fredrik Sjoberg, sociologist and research fellow at the OSCE Academy in Bishkek, said in an interview with EurasiaNet that the threshold of 0.5 percent from the total number of voters is "a mockery of all that democratic elections could possibly be". EurasiaNet

13. On 26 November, Ombudsman Tursunbai Bakir uulu said he is looking for Persian-speaking Kyrgyz radio journalists because the radio of the Iranian city of Meshhed intends broadcasting in Kyrgyz. 24.kg

14. On 26 November, ACN News of Australia reported, Catholics make up a very small minority of around 600 faithful among a total population of some 5.1 million souls in Kyrgyzstan. Most of them belong to the so-called "Russian Germans" who moved from Siberia, following the death of Stalin, to the more climate friendly region. ACN News

15. On 27 November, the Social Democratic Party said the National TV Company reject showing its paid election clips in prime time saying another political organization bought all that time and gives social democrats only a period between 11:00 and 13:00. 24.kg

On 27 November, a planned process against the government did not begin at the Bishkek Inter-District Court - no government representative came. President of the Sergey Radonezhsky and Manas the Magnanimous Foundation sued the government and demanded expelling the U.S. troops from Kyrgyzstan.

16. On 27 November, Kazakh intelligence services extradited to Kyrgyz authorities Ulugbek Osmonov, member of the Board of Directors of the Coalition of NGOs "For Democracy and Civil Society, who is accused of organizing an attack on the cortege of Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev in the Talas Province last May. Osmonov arrived in Talas in May due to the protests of local residents against developing the Jerooy gold deposit. 24.kg, DW

17. On 28 November, the Bishkek Inter-District Court upheld the ruling by the Central Election Commission that the 0.5-percent regional threshold must be counted from the total number of registered voters in the country. A plaintiff, the pro-presidential party Ak Jol, said it would appeal against the decision. 24.kg

18. On 28 November, Nurshat Ababakirov wrote in an article posted on the site of the Central Asia-Caucasus Institute of the Johns Hopkins University about the 0.5-percent regional threshold in the Kyrgyz parliamentary elections, "Unlike its initial meaning understood by public, the Central Election Committee increased the election threshold. The new rules may leave even larger parties quite vulnerable, who could mount a decent opposition to the pro-presidential party, Ak Zhol". CACI Analyst

19. On 28 November, Myrzabek Ismailov of the Interior Ministry told journalists in Bishkek about 5 tons heroin would go through the Kyrgyz territory from Afghanistan to Europe in 2007. According to him, Afghanistan is expected to produce 8,200 tons of opium this year, which would give about 800 tons of heroin. According to him, there are 7,750 registered drug addicts in the country, however, their real number is 50 to 60 thousand. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

20. On 28 November, Judge Nancy Osterly of the Clark Circuit of Las Vegas ruled to release Kyrgyz Boxer Almazbek Raimkelov after involvement of the Kyrgyz embassy in Washington and payment of the compensation for a damage and state duty. Raimkulov, champion of North America, was fined for drunk driving back in 2004 and was announced wanted after ignoring the court hearing and arrested in Las Vegas on 7 November. 24.kg, Kabar, Lenta.Ru

21. On 29 November, Erica Marat wrote on the site Eurasia Daily Monitor about the forthcoming presidential elections, "The noticeable increase in the professionalism and consolidation of the Kyrgyz opposition parties suggests that the election's outcome will provide a victory for both pro-regime and opposition forces". EDM

22. On 29 November, head of the Foundation For Tolerance International Raya Kadyrova said at a conference on illegal migration, held in Bishkek, that Kyrgyzstan could loose its southern Batken Province in several years, because their resident leave the country to work abroad and citizens of neighboring Uzbekistan and Tajikistan replace them. 24.kg, AKIpress

23. On 29 November, a report on the court proceeding in Kyrgyzstan in 2005-2006 was released, prepared with the help from the ODIHR of OSCE. It is said in it that 9 percent of tried people said they were tortured during the investigations, however, in the 60 percent of such cases, the judges did not begin inquiries on it. Kabar, 24.kg

24. On 30 November, Russian Expert Vadim Dubnov wrote in Russian "Gazeta" that compared to the situation in Russia, other former Soviet republics seemed more or less democratic ones. Kyrgyz President Bakiyev succeeds being both an adept of authoritarian rule and a revolutioner the same time. Gazeta

25. On 30 November, Renat Medetbekov, director of the Medetbekov Firm of Attorneys, said the text of the Election Code, put on the nationwide referendum on 21 October, differs from its official text published on 24 October. A comma was added in the last one, and based on it, the Central Election Commission ruled on 19 November that the 0.5-percent regional threshold must be counted from the total number of registered voters in the country. However, even with the comma, the text says that the threshold should be counted from the number of voters in each region. 24.kg

26. On 30 November, human rights activists held a picket in front of the Bishkek City Administration building protesting the decree by the City Assembly, which approved the decision by Mayor Daniyar Usenov that any protest actions in the city must be held in one of the three places - either in the Youth Park, or in front of the parliament building or in the Maxim Gorky Park. 24.kg

27. On 30 November, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said at a meeting in Bishkek with inelligentsia that a National Program to Develop Culture and Arts in Kyrgyzstan until 2010 was approved. Kabar, 24.kg

28. On 30 November, Deputy Minister of Transport and Communications Chynara Suyumbayeva said at the Fourth IT Conference held in Bishkek that 85 percent of the Kyrgyzstan's territory is now covered by the mobile phone providers and there are 1.68 million clients, which is 33.6 percent of the total population. However, only 10 percent of the country population has access to the permanent phone lines. Also, in the last five years, gains of the Internet service providers increased six times. 24.kg

29. On 30 November, the Canadian company Centerra Gold said it received a mining license for the Sarytor deposit near its Kumtor gold mine in Kyrgyzstan. It has approximately 300,000 contained ounces of gold in probable reserves. Reuters

30. Appointments and dismissals: on 27 November, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appointed department head in the presidential administration Aaly Karashev governor of the Osh Province, dismissing Jantore Satybaldiyev; Governor of the Jalal-Abad Province Iskenderbek Aidaraliyev became the first vice prime minister the same day; head of the Moscow District of the Chui Province Koshbai Masirov was appointed governor of the Jalal-Abad Province instead of Aidaraliyev; and presidential envoy to the CIS and EurAsEC Ishengul Boljurova was appointed the same day minister of education and science instead of Kanybek Osmonaliyev. On 28 November, Culture Minister Sultan Rayev appointed Keldibek Turgunbaev art director of the National Philharmonic Society and Almaz Sarlykbekov as producer of the Kyrgyz National Theater. On 29 November, Bakiyev appointed Devtagy Arinov head of the administration of the Moscow District in the Chui Province. On 30 November, Bakiyev appointed former deputy of Parliament Kamchybek Tashiyev minister of emergencies making former Minister Turatbek Junushaliev a deputy to Tashiyev. Kabar, 24.kg, KW

Regards, Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 18 - 24 NOVEMBER 2007
_____________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. Parliamentary election in Kyrgyzstan on its last stage.
2. Premier Atambayev in South Korea.
3. Central Election Commission sets up barriers for parties.
4. Observers are ready to monitor the Kyrgyz elections.
5. Premier Atambayev at CIS summit in Ashgabat.
6. International organizations help Kyrgyz health care and education sectors.
7. Also in the week of 18 - 24 November 2007…

19 November, Monday:

1. PARLIAMENTARY ELECTION IN KYRGYZSTAN ON ITS LAST STAGE. The Central Election Commission announced on 19 November, runner lists for the parliamentary election of the 22 following political parties had been received in time for registration:
1. "Aalam - Party of Non-Party Citizens";
2. "Ak Jol";
3. "Ar-Namys";
4. "Asaba";
5. "Ata-Meken";
6. Communist Party;
7. Democratic "New power" Party of Women and Youth;
8. "El Dobushu";
9. "Erkin Kyrgyzstan;
10. "Erkindik”;
11. Greens Party;
12. "Jany Mezgil";
13. Party of Afghan Veterans and Participants of Other Local Military Conflicts;
14. Party of Communists;
15. Party of Farmers;
16. Party of Veterans and Youth;
17. "Rodina";
18. Social-Democratic Party;
19. "Turan"Democratic Party;
20. "Taza Koom";
21. "Tynchtyk" Patriotic Party;
22. “Zamandash";
By the end of business on 24 November, tickets of the seven parties - "Aalam", "Ar-Namys", "Asaba", "Ata-Meken" as well as the Party of Communist and the Social Democratic Party were registered. The registration process ends on 25 November. Kabar, 24.kg, CEC, DW

2. PREMIER ATAMBAYEV IN SOUTH KOREA. Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev of Kyrgyzstan arrived in South Korea on 18 November and met with the speaker of Korean parliament on Monday discussing aspects of bilateral cooperation. He and Korean Prime Minister Han Duck-soo signed on 19 November a bilateral investment treaty and economic cooperation pact. The two countries also signed a memorandum of understanding for cooperation between the ministries of culture and the Kyrgyz province of Chui and Korea's South Jeolla Province. Atambayev had a meeting with President of the Korean International Cooperation Agency (KOICA) Shin Jang-Bum on 20 November, visited the GM-Daewoo Corporation and then took part in a business forum urging the Korean businesspersons to invest in Kyrgyzstan.

Atambayev said in an interview with "The Korea Herald", published on 21 November that Kyrgyzstan was the first CIS country and the only Central Asian state to be accepted into the World Trade Organization and "This means there is no problem with currency conversion or exports of capital from Kyrgyzstan, and I think we have the most liberal and favorable conditions for investors in all spheres". 24.kg, Korea Herald

3. CENTRAL ELECTION COMMISSION SETS UP BARRIERS FOR PARTIES. The Central Election Commission (CEC) decided by voting on 19 November that a threshold of 0.5 percent of votes the parties supposed to overcome in each province of the country plus the two biggest cities - Bishkek and Osh - during the new parliamentary election on 16 December must be counted from the total number of registered voters in the country. So, each party must collect in each region more than 13,500 votes, even in the smallest Talas Province, which has 120,000 voters only. Sources in the presidential administration told Moscow-based "Nezavisimaya Gazeta" that the decision was made with President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's consent. Leaders of the 10 political parties appealed to Bakiyev on 20 November asking to intervene because the CEC had no right to interpret laws. However, the Ministry of Justice supported on 21 November the CEC decision, and even the pro-presidential party, Ak Jol, brought an action against CEC. Ombudsman Tursunbai Bakir uulu appealed to the CEC asking it to cancel the decision.

The Ata-Meken Party rejected taking part in a meeting with the president, the other parties tried to organize on 22 November, - the Ata-Meken leaders met instead with European Commission Charge d'Affaires in Bishkek Jörg Volker Ketelsen that day discussing the pre-election situation in the country. However, a meeting with Bakiyev did not take place - the government said on 23 November there was no need of such meeting because Bakiyev does not intend interfering the election process and all the issues should be resolved through courts. Kabar, 24.kg, NG

21 November, Wednesday:

4. OBSERVERS ARE READY TO MONITOR THE KYRGYZ ELECTIONS. Head of the election observation mission of the OSCE's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) Nikolai Vulchanov told journalists in Bishkek on 21 November that the ODIHR opened its mission in Kyrgyzstan to monitor the early parliamentary elections set for 16 December. He said on 22 November at a meeting in Bishkek with Kyrgyz Foreign Ministry State Secretary Taalaibek Kydyrov that 24 long-term and about 250 short-term OSCE observers would monitor parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan. The non-governmental organization Citizens against Corruption said on 22 November it would train 547 local observers, and the Coalition For Democracy and Civil Society said on 24 November it would prepare about 2,000 observers. The CIS election observation mission arrived in Kyrgyzstan on 23 November. Reuters, Kabar, Press-uz.info, 24.kg, AKIpress

22 November, Thursday:

5. PREMIER ATAMBAYEV AT CIS SUMMIT IN ASHGABAT. Prime Minister Almazbek Atambaev took part in Ashgabat on 22 November in a meeting of the Council of CIS Prime Ministers. Problems of interregional and trans-border cooperation between CIS member countries, harmonization of customs procedures in electricity transfers, cooperation in transportation, fuel and energy sector, military, social, humanitarian and other spheres as well as partnership in anti-aircraft defence were discussed and a number of documents were signed. It was decided to set up a group composed of agriculture ministers to develop a strategy of food market development. However, adoption of a conception on legal status of labor migrants was postponed on request of Russia until the next meeting to be held in Minsk in May 2008. Atambayev had meetings the same day with Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymuhammedov and Russian Premier Viktor Zubkov.

Berdymuhammedov said at the meeting a gas pipeline supplying Russia with natural gas from Central Asia will be modernized to pump 230 million cubic meters per day. Turkmenistan, Kazakhstan and Russia will modernize the gas pipeline to increase its carrying capacity by 20 billion cubic meters. RIA Novosti, Kabar, 24.kg, Turkmenistan.Ru, AKIpress

Foreign Aid this Week:

Kabar, 24.kg 6. INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS HELP KYRGYZ HEALTH CARE AND EDUCATION SECTORS. On 20 November, Health Care Minister Tuigunaaly Abdraimov said the Global Fund against AIDS, TB and Malaria grants Kyrgyzstan $28m for control of these deceases. On 21 November, it became known that the International Monetary Fund completed the fifth review of the Kyrgyzstan's economic performance under the three-year Poverty Reduction and Growth Facility (PRGF) arrangement, enabling the release of about $2 million. On 22 November, the Fund Eurasia - Central Asia announced it begins a program on involving socially vulnerable groups into profitable activity and allots €70,000 for it. On 23 November, the Ministry of Education said the Catalytic Fund Education for All grants $9 million for Kyrgyz schools and kindergartens.

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 18 - 24 NOVEMBER 2007:

7. On 18 November, the international festival of Asian and European films ended in Teheran. The short film Parz by Kyrgyz Director Temir Birnazarov was awarded with a special prize of Jury at it. 24.kg

8. On 18 November, Bazarbai Mambetov said in an interview with Deutsche Welle that if Kyrgyzstan sells water generated electricity to Kazakhstan in summers and uses its own coal for the heating stations it would have money to construct the Kambar-Ata hydro power stations. DW

9. On 19 November, Nikolai Zlobin, director of the Russia and Eurasia Project at the World Security Institute in Washington, said in an interview with the "Expert Kazakhstan" magazine that the current situation in Central Asia is a hostage of the bad relations between Russia and the US and the main problem for Washington is to make its democratic model attractive to local elites. Expert Kazakhstan

10. On 19 November, the 11th Forum of the Turkic states, lasted for three days, ended in Baku. Prime Minister of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on the Turkic nations to unite, "Don’t you know what they are going to do with us, if we do not unite? They will tear us apart!" AZG

11. On 19 November, Director of the AIDS Center Sagynaly Mamatov said future mothers of the southern regions would undergo HIV tests after four pregnant women were found contracted with HIV. About 10,000 children would also be tested. 24.kg

12. On 19 November, the Agency on Environment and Forestry Protection together with the Institute for Biology and Soil of the National Academy of Sciences presented in Bishkek the second edition of the Kyrgyz Red Book. 24.kg

13. On 20 November, World Bank, IFC, and PriceWaterhouseCoopers released the report Paying Taxes 2008 on tax systems of the 178 world countries. According to criteria of ease of paying taxes, Kyrgyzstan is on the 152nd place in the world. Kazakhstan is the 44th, Russia 130th, Tajikistan 155th, Uzbekistan 159th, and China on the 168th place. The top 10 countries in terms of ease of tax payments are Maldives, Singapore, Hong Kong (China), United Arab Emirates, Oman; and Belarus, Ukraine, Congo, the CAR and Venezuela have the hardest systems. Regnum, Economic Times

14. On 20 November, Director of the AIDS Center Sagynaly Mamatov said at a government meeting there were 1,385 HIV-contracted people registered in Kyrgyzstan by 1 November; and 1,269 of them were Kyrgyz citizens. Among them, 107 people total are sick with AIDS. According to Mamatov, 159 people have already died and 82 of them from AIDS. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

15. On 20 November, a round table on rights of children was held in Bishkek. It was said at it there are about 6,000 children in orphanages of the country and 88 percent of them have parents. Tolkun Bekbulatova of the Agency for Sport and Youth Affairs said the government allots now 237 soms ($6) per child daily, however, only 21 soms of it is spent for children and the rest money for other maintenance. Kabar, 24.kg

16. On 20 November, Moscow-based "Rossiyskaya Gazeta" reported that the Tamchy airport on the shore of Lake Issyk-Kul would be able to receive big aircraft next summer. Its runways are reconstructed now. RG

17. On 21 November, head of the Central Asian programs of the Moscow-based Memorial Center Vitaly Ponomaryov presented in Bishkek his new book entitled "Uzbek Refugees in the CIS Countries: Danger of Deportation". Oasis

18. On 21 November, early in the morning, Deputy Chairman of the Social Democratic Party Jusup Jeenbekov was beaten in the southern town of Kara-Kul, in a restaurant. Later the same day, police detained four suspected young people. 24.kg

19. On 21 November, head of the Central Asian regional office of Nokia Yevgeny Vladimirov said the company is about producing mobile phones with menu in Kyrgyz. PR

20. On 22 November, former Deputy of Parliament Kubatbek Baibolov said at a meeting of the Bishkek Liberal Club that the last constitutional reform set up a model of state governance, which does not work. According to him, it would work only in a case if the new parliament comprises of a single party. 24.kg

21. On 22 November, it became known that four companies - the Mott MacDonald Group of UK, SNC-Lavalin of Canada, EDF of France and the UK auditing company PriceWaterhouseCoopers would participate in December in a tender to prepare feasibility studies to complete construction of the two Kambar-Ata hydro power plants in Kyrgyzstan. 24.kg, Reuters

22. On 22 November, Marat Ilkhamov reported on the Russian site Regnum that the Party of Women of Kyrgyzstan avoids participating in the parliamentary elections due to it is not able to fill 30 percent of vacancies in its party ticket with male candidates as the new Election Code requires. Regnum

23. On 22 November, a 16-day campaign against gender violence began in Kyrgyzstan devoted to the International Day against Domestic Violence, marked on 25 November. DW, 24.kg

24. On 22 November, Mayor of Bishkek Daniyar Usenov announced a special site to hold public meetings in Bishkek would be organized in the Youth Park of Bishkek - a special stage with lighting and equipped with radio would be constructed there. This Bishkek Hyde Park would have a first-aid post and local police station too. Kabar. 24.kg, AKIpress

25. On 22 November, Nurilya Joldosheva of the Osh City migration and employment department said 430 residents of the city were selected after the Korean language tests to go to South Korea to work in processing industry, fishing and consumer services. Kabar,

26. On 22 November, the Ministry of Health Care said there are 122 people with mental disorder per 100,000 populations in Kyrgyzstan now. Chief Psychotherapist of Bishkek City Kengeshbek Usenov said in an interview with Moscow-based "Rossiyskaya Gazeta" there are 10 to 15 high-qualified psychotherapists in the country left. 24.kg, RG

27. On 23 November, Political Analyst Mars Sariyev said President Kurmanbek Bakiyev is a player in the current political stage of Kyrgyzstan and journalists are lighters, however, it is not clear who is the play writer. According to Sariyev, Bakiyev is not an author. 24.kg

28. On 23 November, a presentation of the book Film of Memory by Writer Valdimir Mikhailov and Photographer Alexander Fyodorov about the history of the Kyrgyz cinematography was held in Bishkek. Kabar

29. On 23 November, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said at a meeting in Bishkek with the Defense Ministry staff that salaries of state employees would be increased starting 1 January 2008. AKIpress

30. Appointments and dismissals: on 20 November, State Secretary Adakhan Madumarov resigned to run for parliament. On 23 November, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appointed Talantbek Kasmambetov head of the administration of Jumgal District in the Naryn Province instead of Pamirbek Kerimov. The same day, Bakiyev appointed Emilbek Abdykadyrov mayor of the town of Mailuu-Suu in the Jalal-Abad Province replacing Bumairam Mamaseitova. Kabar, 24.kg

Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 11 - 17 NOVEMBER 2007
_____________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. Kyrgyz human rights activists are 'victims of comparison'.
2. Could Kyrgyzstan stop its OSCE membership?
3. First in Central Asia reception center for asylum seekers is opened in Kyrgyzstan.
4. President Bakiyev in Japan.
5. Bishkek city leadership is changed ahead of the elections.
6. Ukrainian way to WTO is open.
7. China and UNDP help Kyrgyzstan.
8. Also in the week of 11 - 17 November 2007…

10 November, Saturday:

1. KYRGYZ HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS ARE 'VICTIMS OF COMPARISON'. Maria Lisitsyna, founder of the Youth Human Rights Group in Kyrgyzstan, said on 10 November in an interview with "The Yale Politic", a quarterly of the Yale University students, "In Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, we call ourselves 'victims of comparison', meaning that our situation is judged to be acceptable just because we are compared to our neighbors. In the most closed and authoritarian states, which by all accounts are Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, at the moment, the violations can be so bad that other states appear warm and fuzzy in comparison". However, "Kyrgyzstan is, unfortunately, changing for the worse. While the central government takes 'hands off' approach, local governmental officials bring lawsuits against human rights defenders. Although the charges are often ridiculous, the outcomes are not very funny, especially since most cases involve criminal prosecution…. Although torture was criminalized, it is not punished. In the first torture case in Kyrgyzstan this year that finally reached court, the policemen were acquitted. And this happens in a country where acquittals make up about one percent of all verdicts in criminal cases". Yale Politic

2. COULD KYRGYZSTAN STOP ITS OSCE MEMBERSHIP? Ruslan Bahtigareev wrote in an article carried by the Kazakh newspaper "Vremya" on 10 November that Kazakhstan, Russia, Armenia, Belarus, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan prepared some document on reforms in the OSCE and Kazakhstan would use it as a trump in its struggle for a chairmanship in OSCE. The 'Great Seven' would present at an OSCE summit in Madrid their offer to restrict activity of the OSCE observers at the national elections, to ban making any commentaries until the official results are announced and to monitor the elections in the Western countries too. According to Bahtigareev, the OSCE would reject such a proposal, however, the seven countries could decide to stop their membership in the organization in return.

Vladimir Socor of the Jamestown Foundation, DC, wrote on the site Eurasia Daily Monitor on 16 November, "Moscow describes Kazakhstan as the 'collective candidate of the CIS'. In reality, Kazakhstan's candidacy is backed by the CSTO countries, not the CIS" and all the countries supported Russia - Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan - are members of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), a Russia-led bloc, whom Moscow "lined up" to threaten paralyzing major OSCE operations. According to Socor, "Russia hopes to build up the OSCE into an all-European security body and counterpoise it to NATO, particularly in Europe’s East. This is why most Western countries have long resisted turning the OSCE into a full-fledged organization". Vremya, EDM

12 November, Monday:

3. FIRST IN CENTRAL ASIA RECEPTION CENTER FOR ASYLUM SEEKERS IS OPENED IN KYRGYZSTAN. UN High Commissioner for Refugees Antonio Guterres opened in the village of Alamedin near Bishkek on 12 November a reception center for asylum seekers, the first one in Central Asia. He said at the opening ceremony, "The refugees should not be extradited if there is a danger of them being persecuted, as it was the case with people who fled from Uzbekistan following the events in Andijan in May 2005". Guterres also had meetings in Bishkek with Minister of Foreign Affairs Ednan Karabayev and then with President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, thanking them for adherence to the democratic principles and human rights protection and invited Kyrgyzstan becoming a member of the UNHCR Executive Committee. Director of the UN Regional Bureau for Asia and Pacific Region Janet Lim accompanied the high commissioner. Kyrgyzstan received over 20,000 refugees since 1991, their number in the country is now less than 1,000. Kabar, 24.kg, DW, UN News Centre, ReliefWeb

14 November, Wednesday:

4. PRESIDENT BAKIYEV IN JAPAN. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev arrived in Japan on 14 November and had a meeting with Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda of Japan the same day. They signed a joint statement on friendly relations, partnership and cooperation between the two countries. Fukuda praised Kyrgyzstan for its support for antiterrorism coalition aircraft and said Japan would continue development assistance for Kyrgyzstan to help the country in the process of democratization and efforts toward a market economy. Bakiyev was received by Emperor Akihito on 15 November and then he had meetings with speaker of the lower house of Japan's parliament Yohei Kono, Minister of State for Regulatory Reform Yoshimi Watanabe and Vice President Katsuhiro Nakagava of Toyota Motors offering him to open a representative office in Kyrgyzstan. On 16 November, Bakiyev visited the TDK Corporation in Narita and then took part in an investment seminar with participation of businesspersons of the two countries. He said at the forum he hopes Kyrgyzstan would stop soon being a recipient of the aid only and the there would be a full partnership relations between the two states. Totally, Japan provided over $400 million low-percent credits, subsidies and technical contribution. In 2006, trade turnover between the two countries reached $11.5 million.

Foreign Minister Ednan Karabayev, head of the foreign affairs department in the presidential administration Islan Ryskulov, Adviser to the President Zamir Bekboyev, and Minister of Transport and communications Nurlan Sulaimanov accompanied Bakiyev in his visit to Japan. AP, Kabar, Itar-Tass, 24.kg

5. BISHKEK CITY LEADERSHIP IS CHANGED AHEAD OF THE ELECTIONS. Bishkek City Council approved Daniyar Usenov as the mayor of Bishkek on 14 November. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appointed him to the post on 10 October replacing Arstanbek Nogoyev. On 12 November, the Central Election Commission formed a special commission to elect the mayor on a request of the president, and President Bakiyev named on 13 November the two candidates to the post - Daniyar Usenov and Bolot Khudaibergenov. Thirty-six out of attended 41 deputies of the assembly voted for Usenov on 14 November. However, the ballot-box was put not in the foyer of the building but in the room of the head of a commission of the assembly, Aibek Osmonaliyev, who became a new chair of the assembly two hours later.

Former Chairwoman of the Bishkek City Assembly Nurjamal Baibolova, who criticized the authorities, was dismissed from her post on 31 October in her absence. On 5-10 October, Bakiyev replaced First Vice Mayor Ilya Klimenko by Oleg Tarbinsky; appointed Yury Shkuropatov head of the Lenin District administration of Bishkek, replacing Nikolai Bailo, and changed heads of the other two out of four city districts appointing Soyuzbek Saliyev head of the Oktyabr District and Bolot Beishenkulov head of the Pervomai District replacing Kubanychbek Aitbayev and Amangeldi Kenjetayev correspondingly. On 14 November, the two candidates, Osmonaliyev and Muratbek Akmatbayev, took part in the election of the Bishkek City Assembly leader and Osmonaliyev, supported by Mayor Daniyar Usenov, won it collecting 28 votes. Kabar, 24.kg

6. UKRAINIAN WAY TO WTO IS OPEN. Foreign Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk of Ukraine said on 14 November, "I can officially confirm that Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan have signed an agreement on the World Trade Organization (WTO) accession." According to him, a trade pact with Kyrgyzstan is the last bilateral protocol needed for Kiev to join the WTO. Ukraine has been seeking the WTO membership for 14 years, and the country's president, Viktor Yushchenko, who declared accession to the global trade body as a top priority immediately after coming to power in 2004, said on 13 November that Ukraine might become the WTO member by the end of this year. RIA Novosti

The Ukrainian delegation arrived in Bishkek on 12 November, and Kyrgyz Finance Minister Akylbek Japarov said after the meeting with First Vice-Premier and Finance Minister Nikolai Azarov of Ukraine the same day that the sides were ready to compromise. The negotiations continued for three days and the sides signed on 14 November a special trade protocol and agreed on a plan, which regulated the Ukrainian debt to Kyrgyzstan. The same day, Ukraine transferred $27.3 million to the Kyrgyz government as humanitarian aid. Itar-Tass, Kabar, 24.kg

Foreign Aid this Week:

7. CHINA AND UNDP HELP KYRGYZSTAN. On 12 November, Commander of the Staff of the Frontier Service of the Chinese Public Defense Ministry Cheng Sheng said at a meeting in Bishkek with Secretary of Security Council Tokon Mamytov of Kyrgyzstan that China would give Kyrgyzstan a military-technical aid worth 4 million yuans ($540,000). The first part of the aid came on 15 November. On 13 November, head of the State Veterinary Department Kalys Jumakanov said the donors agreed allotting $1 million as reimbursement to farmers who had to slaughter their infected livestock. On 13 November, UNDP granted 76 personal computers to the Kyrgyz local administrations. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIPress

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 11 - 17 NOVEMBER 2007:

8. On 10 November, the 17th Festival of Films from Eastern Europe ended in Cottbus, Germany. The film Boz Salkyn by Kyrgy Director Ernest Abdyjaparov was awarded with the prize "From Cottbus to Cinema" worth €10,000 to support its distribution. Variety, KW, 24.kg

9. On 11 November, officials of the Kyrgyz Drug Control Agnecy detained at the Bor-Dobe post in the southern Osh Province a 53-year-old drug courier with 42 kg and 960 grams of heroin - the largest seizure of the drug in the country's history. He delivered drugs from Tajikistan to Kazakhstan and Russia via Kyrgyzstan and the price of the seized heroin worth around $1.2 million. Regnum,

10. On 12 November, Russian Professor Sergei Luzyanin said in an interview with the Bishkek Press Club that despite many pluses and minuses of the President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's leadership in Kyrgyzstan, his current position is very firm now and it is good for the strategic future of the country. BPC

11. On 12 November, K.Mamatbekov wrote in an article posted on the site geokz.tv that the Kyrgyz intellectual elite could alienate from the pro-presidential Ak Jol Party due to Chairwoman of the Constitutional Court Cholpon Bayekova and State Secretary Adahan Madumarov have been named numbers one and tow on the part lists of candidates to the parliamentary election. geokz.tv

12. On 12 November, Kyrgyz and Kazakh foreign ministers Ednan Karabayev and Marat Tajin held in Bishkek the First session of the Council of Foreign Ministers of Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan, which is the coordinating body of the two countries' Inter-State Council. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev and Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev received Tajin on 13 November. RIA Novosti, Itar-Tass, Kabar, 24.kg

On 12 November, foreign ministers of Kyrgyzstan and Ukraine Ednan Karabaev and Arseny Yatzenyuk signed a protocol on cooperation between the two ministries. Kabar,

13. On 12 November, Sergei Sidorov of the State Penitentiary Department said the government gives 29 soms ($0.8) for nutrition per prisoner in Kyrgyzstan while children in the orphanages receive 20 soms only. BPC

14. On 12-13 November, a Kyrgyz delegation took part in Astana in the second forum of the CIS intellectual workers. Minister of Culture and Information Sultan Rayev delivered a speech at it on freedom of speech in Kyrgyzstan. Itar-Tass, Kabar,

15. On 12-15 November, several high-level conferences on the new economic partnership in the 21st century between the EU and Central Asia took place in Berlin, organized by different international bodies. Kabar, 24.kg, DW

16. On 13 November, the trial against the six participants of the protest action "Say NO to Dictatorship!", held in Bishkek on 10 November, began at the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek. Human rights activists organized a picket in front of the court building on 13 November demanding for freedom of assemblies and peaceful meetings. The court convicted Nargiza Abdyldayeva and Tilek Sydykov on 14 November, Chinara Aitbayeva and Anvar Sarymsakov on 15 November, and Maksim Kuleshov and Anara Sultangaziyeva on 26 November of breaching the Administrative Code and warned them. 24.kg, Regnum

17. On 13 November, the Kyrgyz Association of Diabetics said there are 25,000 registered in the country with diabetes, however, the real number is two or three times higher. According to the association the Law on Diabetes does not work in Kyrgyzstan and the diabetics survive themselves. Kabar, Regnum

On 14 November, the OSCE Field Office in Osh expressed its concern that some political parties in Kyrgyzstan started pre-scheduled election campaign to the parliament. 24.kg

18. On 14 November, Director of the non-governmental organization Citizens against Corruption Tolekan Ismailova said at a conference in Osh City the number of human rights abuses is increasing in the country and gave examples of detention of Adilet Aitikeev and Maksim Kuleshov and a trial against Jypargul Arykova, as well as a dirty campaign against slain Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov. Ismailova also said in an interview with Deutsche Welle on 13 November that many residents of Kyrgyzstan are afraid now taking part in rallies and demonstration because they could find themselves in prison after it. 24.kg, DW

19. On 14 November, it became known that prominent Kyrgyz Boxer Almazbek Raimkulov, champion of North America, was arrested in Las Vegas on 7 November - he was fined for drunk driving back in 2004 and was announced wanted after ignoring the court hearing. AKIpress, Kabar, Lenta.Ru, RIA Novosti

20. On 15 November, former Speaker of the Parliament Omurbek Tekebayev called a 0.5-percent regional threshold for the political parties to be elected to a new parliament a special obstacle for others to support the pro-presidential party. According to him, even the Central Election Commission is not able to explain how that 0.5 percent must be calculated - from the number of voters in each region or from their total nationwide number. AKIpress

21. On 15 November, Erica Marat wrote in an article posted on the site Eurasia Daily Monitor, "The top places in President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's political bloc, Ak Zhol, went to the chair of the Constitutional Court, Cholpon Bayekova, and State Secretary Adakhan Madumarov". However, "according to the Kyrgyz Judicial Code of Conduct, judges are not allowed to support any political party or to even express their political views". EDM

22. On 15 November, Political Analyst Zainidin Kurmanov said at a round table on the media situation ahead of the parliamentary election, organized by the Bishkek Press Club, that media and Kyrgyz journalists form public opinion in Kyrgyzstan, they work out policy and do it better than professional politicians sometimes. IPP

23. On 15 November, the Russian site RBC Daily reported that if Russia recognizes independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetiya, then Belarus, Bolivia, Cuba, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Venezuela would follow Moscow immediately. RBC Daily

24. On 15 November, former Deputy of the Parliament Kubatbek Baibolov said in an interview with the newspaper "De Facto" the political processes in the country are led now by head of the presidential administration Medet Sadyrkulov actually, not by President Kurmanbek Bakiyev. De Facto

25. On 15 November, Minister of Education Kanybek Osmonaliyev said at a conference in Bishkek on higher education problems that there are 13,000 professors and instructors working at the universities and institutes of the country and 12 percent of them only make scientific researches. Kabar

26. On 16 November, former State Secretary Ishenbai Abdurazakov said at a round table on the forthcoming parliamentary elections that the new parliament could be a single party dominated body only if there would be serious falsifications of the election results. 24.kg

27. On 16 November, "Frankfurter Allgemeine" of Germany reported that Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, who came to power after the 'Tulip Revolution', did not changed anything in the country - he avoids economic reforms, corruption is flourishing as before and a new constitution increases a danger of authoritarianism restoration. DW

28. On 16 November, the NATO Youth Forum "Appeals and Opportunities of Central Asian Youth" was held in Bishkek. Kyrgyz State Secretary Adahan Madumarov, Turkish Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Serpil Alpman, NATO Civil Representative to Afghanistan Hikmet Chetin took part in it. Kabar, 24.kg

29. On 16 November, a trial against former consultant of the parliamentary press service Jypargul Arykova began in the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek, she is accused of treason. According to the National Security Committee, Arykova worked for a foreign intelligence service for several years and was detained in Bishkek on 19 June 2007 together with a Chinese citizen. The trial is expected lasting for a several weeks. 24.kg

30. On 16 November, "People's Daily" of China reported that the trade turnout between the Chinese Xinjiang Province and the Central Asian states reached $10,000 million in 10 months of the year, a leader is Kazakhstan and the figure for Kyrgyzstan was $2,300 million, or more than in 2006 by 65 percent. People's Daily

31. On 16 November, the British-American newspaper "TimeOut" called the film Saratan (2005) by Kyrgyz Director Ernest Abdyshaparov as "a lovely film" and reported that Abdyshaparov "shows not only his considerable documentary skills, but a sweet talent for satire". TimeOut

32. On 17 November, "Dawn" of Pakistan reported, "the World Bank has advised Pakistan to start working on import of cheap electricity from Central Asian states". According to the paper, the cost of supply from the Kambar-Ata power stations in Kyrgyzstan would range about three cents per unit compared with existing average generation cost in Pakistan at 5.6 cents per unit. Dawn

33. On 18 November, Kyrgyz Prime Minister Almaz Atambayev is scheduled to make a three-day visit to Korea. He meets with Korean Prime Minister Han Duck Soo on 19 November and then with National Assembly Speaker Lim Chae-jung. Atambayev also took part in a Kyrgyz-Korean investment forum. It is the first Kyrgyz prime minister's visit to Korea since the establishment of bilateral diplomatic ties in 1992. Kabar, Korea.net

34. Appointments and dismissals: On 13 November, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appointed Manas Joldoshbekov head of the Talas District Administration of the Talas Province instead of Kanatbek Nartayev. On 14 November, Director of the National Philharmonic Society Bolot Osmonov was appointed director of the National Opera and Ballet Theater in Bishkek replacing Timur Salamatov. Kabar,

Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 4 - 10 NOVEMBER 2007
_____________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. Nobody in Kyrgyzstan was interested in killing Alisher Sayipov.
2. International image of Kyrgyzstan could suffer.
3. Democracy in the region is neither triumphant nor defeated.
4. Economic growth continues in Central Asia.
5. New CIS Executive Secretary travels around the republics.
6. Income of women in Kyrgyzstan is much less then of men.
7. Kyrgyzstan would create favorable investment climate - Bakiyev.
8. New generation continues a tradition of protests.
9. France helps Kyrgyz Army.
10. Also in the Week of 4 - 10 November 2007…

5 November, Monday:

1. NOBODY IN KYRGYZSTAN WAS INTERESTED IN KILLING ALISHER SAYIPOV. Kyrgyz Ombudsman Tursunbai Bakir uulu said in Bishkek on 5 November that the Kyrgyz police and security officials would not find those who were behind the killing of Independent Journalists Alisher Sayipov in Osh on 24 October, if they act as before. According to him, nobody in Kyrgyzstan was interested in the murder, however, he bother the official Tashkent. Bakir uulu also said at the same meeting with journalists it is of no use to invite observers of the CIS or the Shanghai Cooperation Organization to the December parliamentary election in Kyrgyzstan because they always report any election in the post Soviet area is held free and fair. Even after the 2005 parliamentary election, which led to the public revolution, they reported everything was OK.

Also on 5 November, Gavin O'Reilly, President of the World Association of Newspapers (WAN), and George Brock, President of the World Editors Forum, sent a letter to Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev expressing their grave concern at the murder of Sayipov and calling on him to ensure that a swift and thorough investigation into Sayipov's murder is held and that those responsible are quickly brought to justice. WAN groups 18,000 newspapers in 102 countries. DW, IFEX

6 November, Tuesday:

2. INTERNATIONAL IMAGE OF KYRGYZSTAN COULD SUFFER. Reporters Without Borders stated from Paris on 6 November that political pressure threatens to stall investigation of murder of independent journalist Alisher Saipov, "We urge the government to realise the seriousness of this murder of one of the very few independent voices in Uzbek journalism. The way this murder was carried out, in public and in broad daylight, amounts to a message of intimidation to all independent journalists in Central Asia. We warn the authorities against making any dangerous calculation. The positive image enjoyed by Kyrgyzstan in the international community will suffer immeasurably, if it instantly rules out leads implicating its powerful Uzbek neighbour, particularly if it tries to hide illegal acts by agents of foreign intelligence services on Kyrgyz soil, who could be implicated in Alisher Saipov's death". RSF

7 November, Wednesday:

3. DEMOCRACY IN THE REGION IS NEITHER TRIUMPHANT NOR DEFEATED. Adrian Basora, former U.S. Ambassador to Czechoslovakia, on 7 November called Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova as the countries with Hybrid Regimes where Moscow maintains strong interest and significant leverage. The nine other CIS republics - "Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kazakstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan - have one critical trend in common over the past several years: increasing consolidation of autocracy…. Discounting the initial brief glimmers of hope surrounding the 'Denim Revolution' in Kyrgyzstan, none of these regimes has shown any major chinks in its authoritarian armor". According to Basora, "the timeframe for any potential democratic evolution must be measured in decades rather than years. The West can and should lay the groundwork for possible future democratic breakthroughs, while realizing that it is a long-term endeavor. Today's policymakers and democracy-promoters have much to learn from the forms of long-term engagement that were pursued with such patience and foresight during the latter decades of the Cold War. Democracy in the formerly communist countries of Europe and Eurasia is neither triumphant nor defeated, but the job is still less than half done. Positive momentum was an important factor in the spread of democracy in the 1990s and even through 2004, and this positive momentum can be regained if the West looks to the lessons of history". Spero News

4. ECONOMIC GROWTH CONTINUES IN CENTRAL ASIA. David Owen, Senior Advisor in the IMF’s Middle East and Central Asia Department, presented in Tbilisi on 7 November the main findings for the region of the International Monetary Fund's latest Regional Economic Outlook. The Caucasus and Central Asia is one of the fastest growing regions in the world, with real GDP set to rise by an average of 13 percent this year. Both oil and gas exporters (Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Turkmenistan) and non-oil exporters (Armenia, Georgia, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan) are doing well. The region's strong performance reflects improved macroeconomic policies, reforms to improve the business environment, booming commodity exports, and large inflows of foreign direct investment and remittances. However, strong foreign exchange inflows combined with the recent surge in international food prices have resulted in a sharp uptick in inflation in recent months, except in Armenia. Average annual inflation in the region increased to over 12 percent in September and is set to go higher before the end of the year. Business Intelligence

8 November, Thursday:

5. NEW CIS EXECUTIVE SECRETARY TRAVELS AROUND THE REPUBLICS. CIS Executive Secretary Sergey Lebedev, who was the Director of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service until 5 October, arrived in Kyrgyzstan on 7 November and met in Bishkek on 8 November with Minister of Foreign Affairs Ednan Karabayev and then with President Kurmanbek Bakiyev discussing aspects of realization of the CIS development concept and cooperation in the CIS during the chairmanship of Kyrgyzstan. Lebedev also had meetings with Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev and Chairwoman of the Central Election Commission Klara Kabilova discussing preparations for the upcoming parliamentary elections and it's monitoring by the CIS observers.

Some other Kyrgyz-Russian meetings took place in Bishkek the same days. Karabaev met with Deputy Foreign Minister Georgiy Karasin of Russia on 8 November discussiтп prospects of bilateral cooperation in political, economic and cultural-humanitarian areas. State Secretary Adakhan Madumarov had a meeting with Karasin, Chairman of a Russian Duma's committee Konstantin Kosachev and Russian Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Valentin Vlasov the same day. Kommersant, Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

6. INCOME OF WOMEN IN KYRGYZSTAN IS MUCH LESS THEN OF MEN. World Economic Forum released on 8 November the Global Gender Gap Report 2007. Kyrgyzstan occupies in it the 70th place among the 128 world countries. It is said in the report that the mean age of marriage for women in Kyrgyzstan is 22 years; the fertility rate (births per woman) is 2.60; women occupy 25 percent of positions among the legislators, senior officials, and managers; income (PPP US$) among women ($1,422 per capita) is less then among men ($2464).

The other former Soviet republics got the following places in the rating: 13. Latvia; 14. Lithuania; 21. Moldova; 23. Belarus; 30. Estonia; 32. Kazakhstan; 41. Uzbekistan; 45. Russia; 57. Ukraine; 59. Azerbaijan; 67. Georgia; 71. Armenia; and 79. Tajikistan. WEF

9 November, Friday:

7. KYRGYZSTAN WOULD CREATE FAVORABLE INVESTMENT CLIMATE - BAKIYEV. President Kurmanbek Bakiev said at the round table on the investment climate improvement, held in Bishkek on 9 November, the Kyrgyz authorities must create in the country the most favorable investment climate in the region to attract hundreds of million dollars foreign investment. It is needed political stability in the country for it and Kyrgyzstan is close to it after the referendum on a new constitution, the president said. Masaru Honma, the director of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development for Central Asia, said at the forum the Kyrgyz experience of forming a special investment council is a model for other countries, however, it should abolish some administrative obstacles for the business. According to him, Kyrgyzstan is able to increase its GDP by 55 percent within 10 years if some barriers in customs are abolished; transit terms and visa requirements are improved. Executive Director of the International Business Council Talai Asylbekov suggested setting up a joint commission to work out a new Tax Code. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

10 November, Saturday:

8. NEW GENERATION CONTINUES A TRADITION OF PROTESTS. Police detained in Bishkek on 10 November eight participants of the action "Say NO to Dictator!" After several hours of detention at the police department, the same day, a trial against them began at the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek, which was soon postponed until 13 November due to lack of evidences. Organizer of the action, Maksim Kuleshov, head of the Human Rights Resource Center in the town of Tokmok, said they sent a notification on the action to the Bishkek City Administration on 1 November. The action aimed to protest usurpation of the power by a single person, as well as strengthening democratic practice and getting over the apathy and passive mood among the Kyrgyz society, which could allow returning totalitarianism. According to Kuleshov, the constitutional referendum, held by the Kyrgyz authorities on 21 October, became an evidence of such a grim tendency. Members of the youth wing of the Greens and Kalybek Akunov, the brother of Bektemir Akunov, who was beaten severely at the Naryn City Police Department and died last April, took part in the action. AKIpress, Kabak, Gazeta

Foreign Aid this Week:

9. FRANCE HELPS KYRGYZ ARMY. On 8 November, Emanuel Bet of the French Foreign Ministry said at a meeting with Kyrgyz Minister of Defense Ismail Isakov in Bishkek France doubles funding of military cooperation with Kyrgyzstan in 2006-2008 and is ready to purchase paraplanes for the Kyrgyz Army, and provide 10 Kyrgyz servicemen with places in French military colleges for training. 24.kg

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 4 - 10 NOVEMBER 2007:

10. On 5 November, Commander of the U.S. Central Command Admiral William Fallon met in Bishkek with Kyrgyz Defense Minister Ismail Isakov discussing perspectives of the bilateral military cooperation. Fallon told journalists after the meeting, "There is no need for increasing the coalition forces' military contingent at Manas airbase". He also had meetings the same day with Foreign Minister Ednan Karabayev and Secretary of the Security Council Tokon Mamytov. RIA Novosti, Kabar, 24.kg

11. On 5 November, Erica Marat wrote in an article posted on the site Eurasia Daily Monitor that unlike the parties Nur Otan in Kazakhstan and Peoples' Democratic Party in Tajikistan, the pro-presidential party Ak Jol in Kyrgyzstan "faces quite strong competition from opposition parties" and "should Ak Jol gain a significant but suspicious parliamentary majority Bakiyev risks mass demonstrations". EDM

12. On 5 November, Arkady Dubnov of Moscow-based "Vremya Novostei" said in an interview with the Bishkek Press Club that Kyrgyzstan has a government and an opposition, which it deserves, and the apolitical situation is stable in the country while some irreconcilable opposition politicians become supporters of the authorities. Such a situation could begin to change only when a real political opposition emerges. BPC

13. On 5 November, former Chairwoman of the Bishkek City Assembly Nurjamal Baibolova, who was dismissed on 31 October, said she was sacked because the authorities wanted sidelining any strong politicians before the parliamentary elections. According to her, the opposition would win the election in case it is held fair. AKIpress, 24.kg

On 5 November, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said at a meeting in the Toktogul District that construction of the Kambarata-2 hydro power station should be completed by 22 December 2009. Kabar

On 5 November, the Ministry of Economic Development said the government plans implementing 11 big investment projects in 10 years worth $1,600 million total. 24.kg

On 5 November, International Business Council reported regulatory environment, business regulation and loans granting procedures demonstrated improvement in Kyrgyzstan in the last six months and 60 percent of the surveyed investors expect some positive changes in the investment climate. 24.kg

14. On 5 November, the Ministry of Labor and Social Protection said an average salary in Kyrgyzstan is now 3,727 soms a month ($100), which is higher than in 2006 by 30 percent, and the minimal subsistence level is 2,654 soms now. Regnum

On 6 November, Department Head in the Russian Foreign Ministry Aleksandr Chepurin said Moscow will keep up the pressure on Latvia to give the Russian language an official status as it is now in Belarus, Kazkahstan and Kyrgyzstan. RIA Novosti

15. On 6 November, the Russian site CNews reported, "Morgan Stanley, the world famous consulting company, is having serious troubles for providing consultations in the Kirghiz operator Sky Mobile sales carried out by the holding Altimo…. Three MTS daughter companies - Flaxendale Holdings, Kyrgyz Mobil Tel and George Resources - registered on the island Man have filed a suit to London Commercial Court against the established US consulting company Morgan Stanley". CNews, RB, Vedomosti, RBC,

16. On 6 November, the 17th international festival of Eastern European films began in Cottbus, Germany. The film Boz Salkyn by Ernest Abdyjaparov and the two short films, The Border by Marat Alykulov and Parz by Temir Birnazarov, represent Kyrgyzstan. Kabar, Hollywood Reporter

On 6 November, Edgar Gomes of the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation, a non-profit scientific organization that has created the world's most diverse and comprehensive collection of genetic genealogy information, told journalists in Bishkek that according to studies of DNA samples of the Kyrgyz, they are the Europeans by 25 to 45 percent, however, the researches should be continued. Kabar, 24.kg, Businesswire

17. On 7 November, human rights activists held a requiem meeting in Chong-Tash, suburb of Bishkek, where many prominent Kyrgyz politicians were executed on 5-8 November 1937. 24.kg

On 7 November, State Secretary Adakhan Madumarov said at the conference in Bishkek on the role of Russian-language media of Central Asia that the Kyrgyz authorities would not allow ousting of the Russian-language newspapers from the Kyrgyz regions. Kabar, 24.kg

18. On 8 November, representatives of several youth organizations picketed the building of the National Security Comittee in Bishkek demanding release of Adilet Aitikeev of the Kanjar youth movement, who was arrested on 25 October. AKIpress

19. On 8 November, the National Security Committee announced it closed the criminal case connected with the alleged life attempt on Prime Minister Almazbek Atambaev due to investigation found no evidence of poisoning. The governmental press service said on 9 November it would release all the documents and expertise on the poisoning, which took place last May. Adil Turdukulov of the Young Politicians' Forum said on 9 November, the National Security Committee serves as an instrument of political pressure on the eve of the parliamentary elections instead of fulfilling its direct duties. AKIpress, Kabar, RIA Novosti

20, On 8 November, former State Secretary Naken Kasiyev said in an interview with the newspaper "De-Facto" that the new Kyrgyz authorities faked the results of the constitutional referendum so cynically and cheeky that the former President Askar Akayev's government is now looked much more honest that the current one. De-Facto

21. On 8 November, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development said it sold half of its stake in Canada's Centerra Gold, which has gold mining project in Kyrgyzstan. Interfax

22. On 8-16 November, the European Week is held in Bishkek, organized by the European Union, the European Commission Mission in Kyrgyzstan, and the European Club. The conference on the present and future cooperation between the EU and Kyrgyzstan was held also in Bishkek on 9 November. Kabar, AKIpress

23. On 9 November, former Deputy of Parliament Bolot Sherniyazov said in an interview with the newspaper "De-Facto" that he asked newly appointed Chairwoman of the Central Election Commission Klara Kabilova, when her appointment was approved in parliament, whether the referendum on 21 October would be held in accordance with the 1993 constitution. She replied yes and agreed that the referendum results must be approved in parliament. However, they did not do it and dissolved the parliament next day after the referendum. De-Facto

24. On 9 November, the government said the number of unemployed in Kyrgyzstan increased by 2.4 percent in 2007 at 247,000 people, which is 11.7 percent of the able-bodied citizens. However, only 71,500 of them have been registered officially as unemployed. 24.kg

25. On 9 November, Minister of Education and Science Kanybek Osmonaliev said at the conference on improvement of management and transparency in universities of Kyrgyzstan, organized by the Eurasia Foundation of Central Asia, that universities spend only 4.7 percent of their funds for educational process and the other part of the budget is spent for staff wages and infrastructure maintenance. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

26. On 9 November, Secretary of the Security Council Toktokuchuk Mamytov said over 24,000 refugees were granted Kyrgyz citizenship in 2006-2007, and 17,585 people receive other countries' citizenship rejecting the Kyrgyz one in the same period. 24.kg

On 10-11 November, the second session of the Inter-Governmental Kyrgyz-Pakistani Commission on trade, economical, scientific and technical cooperation is held in Bishkek. The first meeting was held in Islamabad, Pakistan, in August 2003. Kabar, 24.kg

27. On 10 November, the pro-presidential party Ak Jol approved its list of candidates to the Deceiver parliamentary elections. Chairwoman of the Constitutional court Cholpon Bayekova and State Secretary Adakhan Madumarov lead the list. The same day, the Social Democratic Party also held its congress and put Omurbek Babanov and Bakyt Beshimov on the top of its list. The first places in the list the Ar Namys Party got Feliks Kulov and Valery Dil. The Ata Meken" Party formed its list on 8 November and Omurbek Tekebayev, Kubatbek Baibolov and Temir Sariyev are on the top in it. AKIpress, Kabar

28. On 10 November, the Council of International Sailing Federation (ISAF) approved two new member nations, Kyrgyzstan and Oman, increasing the number of ISAF Member National Authorities to 125. ISAF

29. On 11 November, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres arrives in Kyrgyzstan to open the first refugee reception centre in Central Asia. UN News Centre

30. Appointments and dismissals: on 5 November, it became known that Osmonakun Ibraimov, state secretary in the government of former President Askar Akayev, was appointed a counselor in the Kyrgyz Embassy in UK on 2 November, however, on 6 November, the Foreign Ministry cancelled its decision at the request of Medet Sadyrkulov, the head of presidential administration. AKIpress, Kabar, BPC

Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 28 OCTOBER - 3 NOVEMBER 2007
_________________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. Anything known to Kyrgyz security officials is known by the Uzbek ones too.
2. Kyrgyz State Secretary: No big problem that a journalist is killed.
3. Kyrgyzstan could receive a parliament that does not reflect the popular will.
4. Kremlin political technologists consult the Kyrgyz president.
5. Slain journalist could be announced a confederate of terrorists.
6. Kyrgyz economy is not competitive.
7. 'Uzbek trace' in the murder of a journalist could harm Uzbekistan.
8. No premature statements should be done on contacts of a slain journalist with terrorists.
9. Asian bank helps to rehabilitate roads in Kyrgyzstan.
10. Also in the week of 28 October - 3 November 2007

27 October, Saturday:

1. ANYTHING KNOWN TO KYRGYZ SECURITY OFFICIALS IS KNOWN BY THE UZBEK ONES TOO. Kyrgyz Ombudsman Tursunbai Bakir uulu said on 27 October in an interview with the BBC Uzbek Service about the killing of Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov in Osh on 24 October, "It's most likely that the footsteps are coming from Uzbekistan". Bakyt Seyitov, the Interior Ministry's chief spokesman, said on 30 October, "One of the versions is the possibility of involvement of Uzbek security services because he constantly criticized Karimov's policies and the Uzbek government in his newspaper". However, head of the press service of the Osh Province Police Department Zamir Sydykov said, commenting on a statement by the ombudsman, "There are no evidence and grounds to believe that the Uzbek security services are involved in the murder of Saipov".

Next day after the killing, on 25 October, Vitaly Ponomaryov of the Moscow-based Memorial Human Rights Center reported the same day that organizers of the killing should be looked for in neighboring Uzbekistan. Galima Bukharbayeva of the Uzbek Union of Journalists said on 26 October, Sayipov said when the main threat to his life emanated from Uzbekistan. Leila Saralayeva of AP said on 26 October, it is hard to believe that Kyrgyz authorities find those responsible for the killing because Bishkek does not want spoiling its relations with the neighbors.

On 28 October, Deutsche Welle reported that when Shahida Tulegenova, a colleague of Sayipov, was interrogated by the Osh Police, she was warned privately she should be very cautious with the Kyrgyz security officials because anything they know is being known by the Uzbek security service in hours. BBC, Reuters, AIA, DW, Prima-News, AKIpress

28 October, Sunday:

2. KYRGYZ STATE SECRETARY: NO BIG PROBLEM THAT A JOURNALIST IS KILLED. Kyrgyz State Secretary Adakhan Madumarov said in an interview with the OshTV Channel on 28 October, the Kyrgyz society took the murder of Journalist Alisher Sayipov too oversensitively. According to him, journalists are killed everywhere - in Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and not only in Kyrgyzstan, but people in Kyrgyzstan only take it sensitively. Madumarov said it is not a big problem that a journalist was killed, because deputies of parliament and other politicians also are killed and only journalists make a big noise. He also said during a meeting in Bishkek with EU representative Scott Kirin on 31 October that the freedom of expression is a privilege not only of journalists but of all people. Madumarov himself is a journalist by training.

UNESCO Director-General Koichiro Matsuura condemned on 29 October the murder of Sayipov, "Use of violence to silence a journalist is unacceptable, it runs counter to the basic human right of freedom of expression and tramples the democratic right of people to engage in free and informed debate". RIA Novosti, Kabar, 24.kg

29 October, Monday:

3. KYRGYZSTAN COULD RECEIVE A PARLIAMENT THAT DOES NOT REFLECT THE POPULAR WILL. "The Economist" reported on 29 October about the early parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan, "The new election rules hold out the possibility of politics reaching across regional divisions, but a repeat of the electoral violations seen in the recent constitutional referendum could result in a parliament that does not reflect the popular will…. A party-list system, in theory, promises a more representative parliament…. Mr Bakiyev's supporters argue that the president's moves will promote stability and unity in the Kyrgyz Republic…. Mr Bakiyev's critics counter that the president is seeking nothing more than to grab power and sideline his opponents…. Opposition parties are concerned that the election might be stolen, principally through the application of administrative resources - including manipulation of the electoral register, slanted media coverage and access, pressure on state employees to vote for government candidates, and interference in the voting and counting process".

"All these violations were reported by independent monitors during the constitutional referendum and there is no sign at present that the incidents will be fully investigated and the perpetrators punished. So there is little reason not to expect that these violations will not be repeated in the parliamentary election…. The question remains whether the new political arrangements yield a parliament that is truly representative of the country as a whole. Bakiyev has certainly taken some steps in that direction, through some appointments and by the guarantees of minority representation. If state officials work to ensure a presidential clean-sweep, however, with the opposition either eradicated entirely as in Kazakhstan or reduced to a symbolic presence, the structural basis for a restoration of stability will not be present". Economist

4. KREMLIN POLITICAL TECHNOLOGISTS CONSULT THE KYRGYZ PRESIDENT. Russian "Kommersant-Vlast" reported on 29 October that the political system of Kyrgyzstan, after a three-year drift, reaches now a Russian model so admired by the all other Central Asian states. There is now no trace of a revolutionist or a fighter for parliamentarianism in President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, and all the opposition politicians say unanimously that Bakiyev initiated invalidation of the two recent constitutions with the help from the Constitutional Court and immediate call on a constitution referendum after the consultations with the Kremlin political technologists. And Bakiyev must hurry because his rating is falling and the economic situation in he country is worsening. Kommersant-Vlast

30 October, Tuesday:

5. SLAIN JOURNALIST COULD BE ANNOUNCED A CONFEDERATE OF TERRORISTS. The Kyrgyz Ministry of Internal Affairs said on 30 October that activity of Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov, killed on 24 October, was funded from the USA and he was in relations with religious extremists and the Uzbek opposition. According to the investigators, they found in the Osh office of Sayipov two thousand copies of political leaflets and an ID card of a Great Britain citizen, native Uzbek woman, who claimed she had brought the leaflets and a substantial sum of money from Turkey from Mukhammad Salikh, leader of the Uzbek opposition party Erk. Two cheque-books of a Turkish bank were also found in the office and the journalist was expected to draw $6,000 using one of them. They also said Sayipov gave a shelter to Kabul Parpiev, participants of the Andijan events, and later helped him to escape in Kazakhstan, and Sayipov had relations with the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, hiding abroad, and allegedly met with Takhir Yuldash, leader of the movement, in April or May 2007 and could receive regular payment from him.

However, many Kyrgyz analysts say this is propaganda of the Uzbek leadership expressed through Kyrgyz law enforcement bodies. According to them, Sayipov helped many of the Uzbek refugees who fled to southern Kyrgyzstan after an uprising in Andijan in May 2005 that ended in massacre, finding them housing and putting them in touch with the U.N. refugee agency. The Kyrgyz Interior Ministry admitted on 30 October, "The Uzbek authorities were putting ideological pressure on Sayipov".

The US National Endowment for Democracy stated on 2 November, "Kyrgyzstan seeks to be seen as an island of freedom in Central Asia. If the government wishes to advance that image, it must distance itself from this repugnant smear campaign against Alisher, cease harassing the staff of Siyosat, and provide them and other independent journalists in Kyrgyzstan with the protection they need to continue their work. Not least, the authorities need to carry out a serious and impartial investigation of the murder of Alisher Saipov". AP, 24.kg, Reuters, NED

31 October, Wednesday:

6. KYRGYZ ECONOMY IS NOT COMPETITIVE. The World Economic Forum released on 31 October The Global Competitiveness Report for 2007-2008 ranking 131 world countries, which account for more than 98 percent of the world's gross domestic product. Twelve different requirements were considered: Institutions, Infrastructure, Macroeconomic stability, Health and primary education, Higher education and training, Goods market efficiency, Labor market efficiency, Financial market sophistication, Technological readiness, Market size, Business sophistication, and Innovation. According to the Overall Ranking, the US economy is the best followed by Switzerland, Denmark, Sweden, and Germany.

Among the former Soviet republics, Estonia is the best occupying the 27th place in the world and followed by Lithuania (38th), Latvia (45th), Russia (58th), Kazakhstan (61st), and Uzbekistan (62nd). Russia was ranked 62nd in 2006 and gained 4.19 points against 4.07 in 2006. The other republics are in the second half of the Index: Azerbaijan is the 66th, followed by Ukraine (73rd), Georgia (90th), Armenia (93rd), Moldova (97th), Tajikistan (117th) and Kyrgyzstan (119th). Turkmenistan and Belarus were left out of the rankings as the most closed economies to foreign investors. WEF, RIA Novosti

1 November, Thursday:

7. 'UZBEK TRACE' IN THE MURDER OF A JOURNALIST COULD HARM UZBEKISTAN. The German embassy in Bishkek made a statement on 1 November on behalf of the European Union on the murder of Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov in Osh on 24 October. It said the EU condemns strongly the murder and believes firmly in the importance of freedom of expression, media freedom and respect of human rights in development of a democratic and pluralistic society. The EU urges the Kyrgyz authorities to hold an immediate and thorough investigation into the death of Sayipov, arrest those responsible for this act and bring them to justice, as President Kurmanbek Bakiyev assured publicly on 25 October.

The Portuguese EU presidency said in a statement on 30 October, "The EU deplores Saipov's death and praises his work, which provided an important contribution to the promotion of human rights," According to it, any Uzbek connection to the killing could be an embarrassment to the European Union, which on 15 October announced a suspension of visa bans on Uzbek leaders with the aim of encouraging positive steps on human rights. It said the situation would be reviewed after six months and the restrictions could be re-imposed earlier if necessary.

The Voice of Freedom newspaper and the 'Journalists' Union urged on 29 October media workers to boycott Kyrgyz police, "There were over 10 cases of physical assaults against journalists in 2007 only…. Despite statements of the police that they do their best to search for criminals, nobody was ever punished. And most likely, they will not find guilty anybody".

Participants of the forum on freedom of assembly and press freedom held in Bishkek on 31 October, appealed to President Kurmanbek Bakiyev demanding to take adequate measures to stop press freedom abuses and pressure on media because such actions take on general character. The non-governmental organizations Kylym Shamy, Citizens against Corruption, 'Journaists' Union, Youth Human Rights Group, and Institution of Media Representative signed the appeal. 24.kg, Eubusiness, Reuters, VoA,

2 November, Friday:

8. NO PREMATURE STATEMENTS SHOULD BE DONE ON CONTACTS OF A SLAIN JOURNALIST WITH TERRORISTS. The New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) expressed on 2 November its concern at a possible bias in Kyrgyzstan's investigation of the murder of an independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov. According to the CPJ, its officials had met Kyrgyzstan's ambassador to Washington Zamira Sydykova to appeal for an "unbiased, professional investigation that embraces the theory that he was executed simply because he was pursuing truth. The delegation also told the ambassador that it was concerned about a possible bias in the official murder probe". The CPJ statement says "Saipov had indeed interviewed members of the Hizb ut-Tahrir and the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan for various articles; his contacts with them were related to his work as a reporter, his colleagues said…. Kyrgyz authorities must not make premature statements before thoroughly exploring every feasible lead and motive, including the possible involvement of Uzbek security services in Saipov's killing."

Amnesty International urged Kyrgyzstan on 30 October to investigate the murder of independent journalist Alisher Sayipov thoroughly saying the killing could have a "chilling effect" on freedom of speech in Central Asia. The same day, on 30 October, the Ministry of Internal Affairs said it identified the suspect murderers of Journalist Alisher Sayipov and put them on the wanted list. However, the ministry did not identify the killers. 24.kg, Reuters

Foreign Aid this Week:

9. ASIAN BANK HELPS TO REHABILITATE ROADS IN KYRGYZSTAN. On 31 October, Finance Minister Akylbek Japarov and Director of the Asian Development Bank's Central and Western Asian Department Juan Miranda signed an agreement in Bishkek on the project that aimed at rehabilitation of the Sarytash-Karamyk road in frame of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation Program. Also on 31 October, European Commission Charge d'Affairs Jeorg Volker Ketelsen said in Bishkek the European Commission is ready allotting several million US dollars for development of the Kyrgyz Veterinary Service. Kabar, 24.kg

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 28 OCTOBER - 3 NOVEMBER 2007:

10. On 27 October, the Russian journal "Russia in Global Politics" wrote in the issue for September-October that China succeeded in getting territories, being considered as disputed areas during the Soviet tomes, from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan just after the collapse of the USSR. RGP

11. On 28 October, the film Sunduk Predkov by Kyrgyz Director Nurbek Egen won a prize for the best director's work at the International Festival of Films for Families and Children in Moscow. ANN

12. On 28 October, the Kyrgyz football national team lost to Jordan in Amman and did not enter the qualification tournament of the World Cup 2010. AFP, Reuters

On 29 October, the Central Election Commission said it would admit party lists of candidates to participate in the parliamentary election until 18 November. AKIpress

13. On 29 October, the Russian Magazine "Expert" reported the two-months absence of a parliament in Kyrgyzstan could cause problems because the food prices are rocketing and social tensions are in rise, so President Kurmanbek Bakiyev could have to introduce the state of emergency. Expert

14. On 29 October, Secretary of the Security Council Tokon Mamytov of Kyrgyzstan said at a meeting with NATO Secretary General’s Special Representative for Central Asia and the Caucasus Robert Simmons in Bishkek that Kyrgyzstan would do its best to fight international terrorism. Simmons also met in Bishkek with Foreign Minister Ednan Karabayev and Defense Minister Ismail Isakov on 30 October. Simmons said NATO would help Kyrgyzstan in rehabilitation of the nuclear waste sites. Kabar, 24.kg, SNGnews

15. On 29 October, the Kyrgyz Ministry of Economic Development and Trade said Ukraine puts pressure on Kyrgyzstan trying to end the Kyrgyz-Ukrainian talks on Ukraine accession to the World Trade Organization using some other member states of the WTO. 24.kg, Itar-Tass

16. On 29 October, Chairman of the State Agency for Religious Affairs Toigonbek Kalmatov said at a conference in Bishkek on religious freedom, sponsored by the OSCE, there are 1725 religious entities in Kyrgyzstan now including 1619 mosques and 45 madrasahs, 46 Russian Orthodox churches, 292 Protestant communities and 12 societies of Bahai. 24.kg Kabar,

17. On 29 October, residents of the Jalak-Bel village of the Kochkor District in the Naryn Province detained former first vice-chairman of the National Security Service General Boris Poluektov and his friend Boris Matveyev, who allegedly killed a yak in the pasture, shot it and subsequently killed and tried to take it away by a motor vehicle. AIA, 24.kg

18. On 30 October, Centerra Gold Inc. of Toronto reported a third-quarter loss of US$90.4 million. The company announced that it lost 42 cents per share in the quarter on revenues of $98m after recording unusual items totaling $95.2m largely related to its agreement with the government of Kyrgyzstan, where the company is developing Kumtor. The unusual items include a $90.3 million non-cash expense stemming from Centerra's move to issue 10 million treasury shares as part of a deal with the Kyrgyz government and Centerra's majority shareholder Cameco Corp., ceding a larger stake in the company to the government of Kyrgyzstan. The latter owns 53 per cent of Centerra while Kyrgyzaltyn, a joint stock company by Kyrgyzstan owns 16 per cent. Once the deal is completed, Cameco will own about 41 per cent of Centerra, Kyrgyzstan will own about 29 per cent and the public shareholders will own the rest. The Canadian Press, Reuters

CIS education ministers signed in Yerevan an agreement on recognition of higher education documents. 24.kg

19. On 31 October, Media Representative Ilim Karypbekov said in an interview with "Deutsche Welle" that almost all media outlets and journalists in Kyrgyzstan have their supervisors in the security services and report to them regularly. Slain Alisher Sayipov also had such a supervisor and when Alisher got to know that was being shadowing, he tried contacting with the supervisor but could not find him. DW

20. On 31 October, the Bishkek City Assembly dismissed its Chairwoman Nurjamal Baibolova, who did not attend the urgent session due to illness, and her deputy Tatiana Ponomareva as well. Baibolova called the action on 1 November as fight without rules and admitted on 30 October she resigned to save faces of the deputies, who were under very strong pressure from the authorities. 24.kg, Kabar, BPC

21. On 31 October, Former Vice Speaker of the Parliament Erkinbek Alymbekov said his wife was sacked from the Central Election Commission after criticizing falsification of the results of referendum on constitution held on 21 October. 24.kg

22. On 31 October, President of the Asian Development Bank Haruhiko Kuroda, said during a meeting with Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev in Bishkek, "The economy grows very fast under your presidency. There were no such figures for the last ten years". Kabar,

23. On 31 October, the Third International At-Chabysh-2007 Equestrian Festival began in Kyrgyzstan; it will last till 4 November. Kabar

24. On 1 November, the Prosecutor General's Office brought an accusation against former Deputy of Parliament Sultan Urmanaev of power abuse during the Aksy events of March 2002 when he was the Governor of the southern Jalal-Abad Province. 24.kg, KW

25. On 2 November, prime ministers of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) comprised of Russia, China, Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan, signed in Tashkent an agreement on cooperation in the customs sphere. Kyrgyz Prime Minister Almazbek Atambaev suggested setting up a special cultural council of the SCO and had bilateral meetings with Uzbek, Russian and Kazakh premiers Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Viktor Zubkov and Karim Masimov. A special working group, headed by Kyrgyzstan, prepared to the meeting a concept of electronic transboundary interactions. Itar-Tass, Prime-Tass, Kabar, 24.kg, BPC

26. On 2 November, the ninth session of the joint commission "Kyrgyzstan-European Union" was held in Bishkek, it discussed aspects of cooperation in trade and investment, macroeconomic relations, condition for Kyrgyz labor migrants in Europe, copyright protection, sanitary and veterinary services development, transportation issues, energy sector privatization, aviation, mining industry development, fight on corruption. 24.kg

27. On 2 November, Xya Jixuyan of the China Radio International (CRI) told journalists the CRI intends to start broadcasting in Kyrgyz and the other languages of Central Asia. 24.kg

28. On 2-3 October, a Kyrgyz delegation took part in Dushanbe in the 6th Ministerial Conference of the Central Asia Regional Economic Cooperation (CAREC) program of the Asian Development Bank. Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan agreed to an $18.7 billion investment over the next decade to improve Central Asia's network of roads, airports, railway lines and seaports to make the region a vital transit route for trade between Europe and Asia. APP, AKIpress, 24.kg, Itar-Tass

29. On 3 November, the Second Asian Indoor Games ended in Macao, Kyrgyz kickboxers won two gold and four silver medals at the. 24.kg

30. Appointments and dismissals: on 29 October, Minister of Health Care Tuigunaly Abdrayimov dismissed Academician Mirsaid Mirrahimov from the post of the director of the National Cardiology and Therapeutics Center. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev instructed head of the presidential administration Medet Sadyrkulov on 30 October to restore the academician to the post, however, the minister said on 31 October, he received no instruction. On 30 October, President Kurmanbek Bakiev appointed Sumar Nasiza first deputy prosecutor general. On 1 November, Bakiyev appointed Ernis Kyiazov deputy director general of the State TV and Radio Company instead of Beishenbek Bekeshov. Kabar. 24.kg

Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 21 - 27 OCTOBER 2007
_____________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. More than 90 percent of people cast ballots supported new constitution.
2. President Bakiyev dissolves parliament.
3. Two local officials, responsible for Aksy, receive suspended sentences.
4. Ata Meken and Ak Shumkar parties unite.
5. President Bakiyev sends government in resignation.
6. Independent Journalist Sayipov is killed in Osh.
7. Political parties begin being registered for election.
8. Incident with opposition politicians.
9. Kyrgyzstan for limiting OSCE election observers.
10. USAID and EBRD help Kyrgyzstan.
11. Also in the week of 21 - 27 October 2007…

21 October, Sunday:

1. MORE THAN 90 PERCENT OF PEOPLE CAST BALLOTS SUPPORTED NEW CONSTITUTION. Kyrgyzstan voted on 21 October in a referendum on a new constitution offered by President Kurmanbek Bakiyev. There would be 90 seats in it instead of current 75 and all the parliamentarians will be elected by party ballots. Analysts say the draft intended to strengthen Bakiyev's hold on power and stipulates that local governments will serve as "the president's representatives at the regional level." The new Election Code, also voted for at the referendum, bans forming election blocs for the political parties. The Central Election Commission reported on 23 October 77.0 percent of registered voters (2.079 out of 2.7 million) cast their ballots in favor of the changes. About 2.077 million people voted for the new Election Code. The turnout was 81.6 percent, or 94 percent of people taking part in the voting voted for the new constitution.

About 130 international observers of 17 missions and more than 1,000 local observers of non-governmental organizations attended the polling stations. Head of the mission of CIS observers Nauryz Aidarov said on 22 October, "We have registered no gross violations that could substantially affect the outcomes", representatives of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization have not exposed serious violations as well. However, Director of the Interbilim Center Asiya Sasykbayeva said the real figures were four times lower. NGO observers stated on 22 October, "We were witness to cynical attitudes of the government to the referendum. Heads of village administrations were throwing in ballots in batches". The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said on 22 October it was concerned at reports of ballot-stuffing and other irregularities during the referendum. Head of the OSCE Center in Bishkek Markus Mueller said, "A high number of irregularities were reported by several domestic non-partisan observation groups. They reported that they observed massive ballot-stuffing by members of precinct election commissions, use of administrative resources to bring people to polling stations, obstruction of domestic observers by local authorities and members of election commissions". The US Embassy stated on 23 October, "We share the concern of the OSCE about reports of irregularities, including credible reports of ballot-box stuffing and inflated voter participation figures. The referendum did not meet the international standards to which the Kyrgyz Republic has committed itself. The European Union voiced its concern over referendum irregularities on 26 October and reminded that according to the cooperation treaty between the EU and Kyrgyzstan, the respect of democracy is the main element of partnership.

Bermet Bukasheva, a leading member of the opposition Ata-Meken party, told The Associated Press, "The true goal of the referendum is to strengthen Bakiyev's personal power". According to her, Bakiyev would get unrestricted authority to fire the Cabinet and its ministers and to appoint and dismiss judges, the changes would also make it more difficult to impeach the president. Another official of the party Omurbek Abdrakhmanov said on 24 October, former President Askar Akayev also held several referendums and changed the constitution by force, so, the Bakiyev's victory could be a Pyrrhic one. Itar-Tass, US Embassy, DW, Regnum, VN, BPC, RIA Novosti, Kabar, Reuters, Ia-Centr.Ru, IHT

22 October, Monday:

2. PRESIDENT BAKIYEV DISSOLVES PARLIAMENT. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev decreed on 22 October to dissolve parliament. The decree said the parliament took decisions and actions that violate the principle of non-dependence of judges and hamper functioning of the Constitutional Court. The parliament through its actions and decisions provoked a crisis caused by "irresistible contradictions" between the parliament and the Constitutional Court. Under the constitution, the president's duty is to undertake exhaustive measures to prevent from breach of the basic law. Bakiyev instructed the government "to enhance the provision of law and order and the protection of the people's rights and freedoms." The president also said, live on national TV the same day, "In this situation ... I had to decide to dissolve the parliament, and this is what I've done…. As soon as the Constitution comes into effect, I will call the date of parliamentary elections," President Bakiyev. "These will be direct and fair elections. The country will receive parliamentarians elected for their ideas, not for their money." The Central Election Commission stopped activity of the parliament on 22 October officially.

Opposition Parliamentarian Kubatbek Baibolov said about the dissolution, "This is completely unreasonable". Russian "Gazeta" reported on 23 October, Bakiyev dissolved the parliament next day after the referendum, which adopted a new constitution, which should prohibit such a dissolution after it is in effect. Edil Baisalov said the president dissolved the parliament because the latter could have taken a decision not to approve the results of the referendum and the president wanted averting the public opinion from the many irregularities at the referendum. Political Analyst Tamerlan Ibrayimov considers there were no "irresistible contradictions" between the parliament and the Constitutional Court. Professor of the American University in Central Asia Gulnara Iskakova said on 22 October, the president had no ground to dissolve the parliament and the reasons mentioned in the decree are not serious ones. Russian "Kommersant" reported on 23 October that Kyrgyzstan comes back to a presidential reign and the president has control over all the power branches. RIA Novosti, Regnum, AP, AFP, Kommersant, NYT, Reuters, Gazeta, BPC, Kommersant, AKIpress

23 October, Tuesday:

3. TWO LOCAL OFFICIALS, RESPONSIBLE FOR AKSY, RECEIVE SUSPENDED SENTENCES. The Bishkek City Military Court acquitted on 23 October former First Deputy Interior Minister Sadyrbek Dubanaev at the circuit court in Jalal-Abad on the Aksy Events. Two other former officials - former prosecutor of the Jalal-Abad Province Zootbek Kudaibergenov and former head of the province police department Kubanychbek Tokobayev were sentenced to five years in suspended jail each.

On 17 March 2002, police opened fire at a protest demonstration near the village of Bospiek in the southern Jalal-Abad province. Four people were shot dead, one more demonstrator died from beating, after returning home, and another young man was shot to dead by police in Kerben, center of the Aksy district, on 18 March. The Osh Province Military Court sentenced four local officials to two to three years of imprisonment on 28 December 2002 finding them responsible for the Aksy shooting, however, the Military Court of the country acquitted them all on 16 May 2003 saying they acted in accordance with law. The Prosecutor General Office began new investigation last May. 24.kg, KW

24 October, Wednesday:

4. ATA MEKEN AND AK SHUMKAR PARTIES UNITE. The opposition parties Ata Meken and Ak Shumkar announced in Bishkek on 24 October they would present a united party list of candidate to the parliamentary election set for 16 December, because the new Election Code prohibits forming election blocs. One of the co-chairman of Ak Shumkar Kubatbek Baibolov said Chairman of Ata Meken Omurbek Tekebayev would be the number one in the list. Tekebayev himself said, "Being united, we will win the election and get the majority of seats in parliament". Another co-chairman of Ak Shumkar Temir Sariyev said the parties would held a congress later in October to work out its united policy.

5. PRESIDENT BAKIYEV SENDS GOVERNMENT IN RESIGNATION. Kurmanbek Bakiyev said on 24 October at a meeting with members of the parliament he signed a decree on resignation of the government, but he had but he thanked them for their service asked ministers to stay on duty until a new government is formed, after parliamentary elections set for 16 December. Bakiyev thanked the ministers for their work and said they asked for resignation due to a new constitution was adopted. Kabar, 24.kg, VOA

6. INDEPENDENT JOURNALIST SAYIPOV IS KILLED IN OSH. Independent Journalist Alisher Sayipov was gunned down in the southern city of Osh on 24 October at about 7 pm. Sayipov worked for various news media including Fergana.ru and Voice of America and founded the independent newspaper "Siyosat" ("Politics") in Uzbek last March, which was a digest mostly, published it in Osh and distributed around the Fergana Valley. He had close ties to the opposition to the authoritarian regime in neighboring Uzbekistan. Political Analyst Ikbol Mirsayitov was talking with Sayipov when he was assassinated. President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said on 25 October he would oversee the investigation and sent General Omurbek Subanaliyev, department head in the presidential administration, to Osh. Sayipov turned 26 on 4 September.

Reporters Without Borders from Paris, the Committee to Protect Journalists from New York and James Glassman, chairman of the Broadcasting Board of Governors, the U.S. agency that oversees the VOA, from Washington expressed their deep concern the same day and call for a full and complete investigation. The US Embassy in Bishkek condemned the murder on 25 October and stated, "The people responsible for this killing must be found and brought to justice. Journalists and their independent reporting are the bedrock of a free and open society, and any attempt to intimidate them or silence their voices can not be tolerated". Holly Cartner, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch, said on 25 October Sayipov committed to expose human rights abuses, particularly by the Uzbek government. OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Miklos Haraszti said Sayipov was one of the most promising young journalists from Kyrgyzstan. The Mediaconsulting Development Fund said on 25 October Sayipov acted as a free journalist in a free country however, Kyrgyzstan was not able securing his safety. Chairman of the 'Journalists' Society Marat Tokoyev reminded none of the 12 cases of attacks at journalists have investigated thoroughly in Kyrgyzstan.

Sayipov was buried in Osh on 25 October. Vitaly Ponomaryov of the Moscow-based Memorial Human Rights Center reported the same day that organizers of the killing should be looked for in neighboring Uzbekistan.Galima Bukharbayeva of the Uzbek Union of Journalists said on 26 October, Sayipov said when the main threat to his life emanated from Uzbekistan. Head of the Osh City Police Department Rustam Mirzamatov said on 25 October there were no evidences yet about involvement in the case of the security services by neighboring Uzbekistan. Leila Saralayeva of AP said on 26 October, it is hard to believe that Kyrgyz authorities find those responsible for the killing because Bishkek does not want spoiling its relations with the neighbors. RSF, CPJ, US Embassy, Reuters, AP, Kommersant, Prima-News, AKIpress

25 October, Thursday:

7. POLITICAL PARTIES BEGIN BEING REGISTERED FOR ELECTION. Opposition Ata Meken became the first party registered with the Central Electoral Commission on 25 October to run for a new parliament. The commission stated documents of any party applied would not be rejected. About 50 parties submitted their documents to the commission by 27 October and more then 20 were registered by 24:00 of 26 October. Nomination of candidates should be finished on 15 November, the party lists must be submitted to the commission by 18:00 on 18 November and the election campaign would begin on 25 November.

The Central Election Commission announced on 24 October, the CEC the political parties wanted taking part in the election must apply submit notarized documents in three days, because in the case of an early election, the terms are cut by a third. CEC, 24.kg, Kabar, RIA Novosti

26 October, Friday:

8. INCIDENT WITH OPPOSITION POLITICIANS. About ten masked men in camouflage and flank jackets stopped three cars with the leaders of the opposition parties Ata Meken and Ak Shumkar, beat two of their bodyguards firing into the air and then apologized and released all of them saying they were conducting an operation against criminals and stopped them due to their cars moved too fast. According to the police, they detained suspected criminal Malik Makatayev at around the same time and the cars by the politicians were moving very fast just after the care by Makatayev. Omurbek Tekebaev, Kubatbek Baibolov, Temir Sariyev and Omurbek Abdrakmanov held a party conference in the Naryn Province and were on their way back to Bishkek. The cars by the riot police were without plates. RIA Novosti, 24.kg, Kabar, AKIpress

27 October, Saturday:

9. KYRGYZSTAN FOR LIMITING OSCE ELECTION OBSERVERS. Russian "Kommersant" and "Rossiyskaya Gazeta" reported on 27 October that Russia and the six other CIS states - Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan - presented an OSCE resolution draft, which should limit rights of the rights of the OSCE monitoring arm, the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, or ODIHR in observing the elections. Moscow and co-authors say the OSCE observers make political decisions instead of technical ones on the observed elections and do it usually about the post Soviet states while there are many irregularities during the elections in the Western countries too. Russia also offers banning publication any assessments until the official results of any election are published. "Kommersant" writes the draft would be discussed at the OSCE summit in Madrid on 29-30 November and is unlikely to be adopted because needs consensus of all 55 member states. Kommersant, RG, NYT, Gazeta, Grani,

Foreign Aid this Week:

10. USAID AND EBRD HELP KYRGYZSTAN. On 22 October, the USAID launched the second stage of the PEAKS educational program in Kyrgyzstan, $5 million is allotted for it for 5 years. During the first part of the project, lasted from 2003 till 2007, $4,2 million was spent and about 5,000 teachers were trained and buildings of 27 schools were repaired. On 26 October, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development said it would provide Bai Tushum, one of the microfinance institutions of Kyrgyzstan, a $2 million guarantee for local currency loans. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 21 - 27 OCTOBER 2007:

11. On 20 October, Deutsche Welle reported on history of the referendum held on 21 October and process of the constitutional reforms prior to it. DW

12. On 20-22 October, Chairman of the National Bank Marat Alapayev took part in Washington, DC, in annual meetings of the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. Kabar

13. On 22 October, Aleksey Malashenko of the Carnegie Center in Moscow wrote in "Nezavisimaya Gazeta" that the Kremlin leaders consider their policy in Central Asia one the rare successful parts in the Russian foreign policy. NG

14. On 22 October, the Pervomai District Court of Bishkek sentenced Jyldyzbek Kenjebayev and Amantai Seitaliyev, convicting them of taking part in public disturbances during the protest rallies in Bishkek organized by the United Front For Decent Future of Kyrgyzstan last April. AKIpress

15. On 22-25 October, an international forum of ombudsmen was held in Kyrgyzstan, human rights officials from Belarus, Moldova, Russia, Thailand and other countries took part. Kabar, 24.kg, Ombudsman Office

16. On 23 October, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev signed both the new constitution into effect and a decree on holding early parliamentary elections on 16 December in accordance with the new constitution, holding a special festive ceremony. RIA Novosti

17. On 23 October, Svetlana Samoilova wrote on the Russian site Politkom that action by Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev to monopolize the power in the country, his kicking of Feliks Kulov from the government seemed very risky first, however, he gains his ends. Politkom

18. On 23 October, the RBC Daily Russian site reported that Russian and Chinese leaders allowed Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev at the SCO summit in Bishkek on 16 August to take tough measures to get things put in order in the country. RBC Daily

19. On 23 October, the special representative of the NATO secretary-general for the South Caucasus and Central Asia, Robert Simmons, said in an interview with the Russian Interfax Agency that NATO does not intend opening its military bases in the two regions. Interfax

20. On 23 October, Chairwoman of the Bishkek City Assembly Nurjamal Baibolova said newly appointed Mayor of Bishkek Daniyar Usenov begins taking measures to dismiss her and the country president has the right to dissolve the assembly. 24.kg

21. On 24 October, Russian "Kommersant" reported Modest Kolerov, who was responsible for the relations with the CIS countries in the Russian presidential administration, was dismissed due to his tough stance towards those countries. Kommersant

22. On 24 October, Centerra Gold Inc. of Canada, which develops the Kumtor gold deposit in Kyrgyzstan, said dissolution of the Kyrgyz parliament would not affect the contract with the government. Centerra's stock on the Toronto Stock Exchange sank 7.5 percent on 22 October after a statement that the Kyrgyz parliament was dissolved and Centerra's agreement with Kyrgyzstan was delayed, but quickly recovered much of the losses. 24.kg, Reuters Canada

23. On 24 October, the UN day, the forum on poverty reduction was organized in Bishkek by the UN agencies. It was at he forum the poverty rate lowered from 52 to 40 percent in Kyrgyzstan in the last two years on average and is now 58 percent (highest) in the Jalal-Abad Province and 5.5 percent (the lowest) in Bishkek. The rate of sever poverty is 9.1 percent in the country and 0.4 percent in Bishkek. Kabar, AKIpress. 24.kg

24. On 24 October, it became known that the programs of the Russian TV channels RTR-Planeta and Culture as well as the National Russian Radio would be rebroadcast in Kyrgyzstan at the expense of the Russian side. Kabar

25. On 25 October, Arkady Dubnov wrote in Moscow-based "Vremya Novostei" that Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev successfully strengthens his presidential vertical line of power by weakening the opposition and offering some of its representatives, such as Melis Eshimkanov, high positions in the government. VN

26. On 25 October, Russian "Kommersant" reported that incumbent Prime Minister Almaz Atambayev has little chances to head a new government after the December parliamentary elections, because the presidential Ak Jol Party is expected to win it. Kommersant

27. On 25 October, eight out of 15 members of the Supervisory Board of the National TV and Radio Corporation resigned. Member of the board Elvira Sariyeva said on 26 October that the board did not support candidacy of Melis Eshimkanov to lead the corporation and the pro-presidential members resigned to make the board unable taking any decision and paving a way to the president to appoint Eshimkanov by his decree. 24.kg, AKIpress

28. On 25 October, the security services detained in Bishkek one of the leaders of the opposition youth movement "Kanjar" Adilet Aitikeev. He is accused of taking part in the public disturbances on 19 April 2007, was detained on 21 April, however, was released in six days under a written statement that he would not leave Kyrgyzstan but left abroad. 24.kg, AKIpress

29. On 25 October, the international organization EveryChild presented in Bishkek the film Boz Baldar on problems of the street children shot with support from the British Department for International Development and the Sary Jaiyk public fund. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

30. Appointments and dismissals: on 25 October, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev sacked head of the Naryn District of the Nary Province Adamis Kulanbaev, who allowed selling wheat intended to be distributed among disadvantaged local residents. On 26 October, Bakiyev appointed Ishenbek Medetov instead of Kulanbaev. Also on 26 October, Bakiyev appointed Melis Eshimkanov director general of the National TV and Radio Broadcasting Corporation replacing Kyias Moldokasymov. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

Naryn AIYP.

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KYRGYZ WEEKLY: 14 - 20 OCTOBER 2007
_____________________________________________
Review of the week main events in Kyrgyzstan

1. President establishes a party of authorities.
2. Press in Armenia and Moldova is freer than in Kyrgyzstan.
3. Bakiyev consolidates presidential power.
4. Ak Shumkar Party calls on voting against a new constitution.
5. Remittances of labor migrants surpass total aid by donors and direct foreign investment.
6. Moscow seeks to weaken the OSCE.
7. Referendum aims at dissolving the parliament.
8. Russia and the USA help Kyrgyzstan.
9. Also in the week of 14 - 20 October 2007…

15 October, Monday:

1. PRESIDENT ESTABLISHES A PARTY OF AUTHORITIES. The civic movement 'For the Constitution, Reform and Development', which was established on 22 September, just after the president called on 19 September a referendum on the country's new constitution, held in Bishkek on 15 October its congress and set up the new People Party Ak Jol (Bright Path), electing President Kurmanbek Bakiyev its chairman. Bakiyev, who took part in the congress, said the new party would be "a party of workers and achievers, who want to work for the benefit of Kyrgyzstan, not party bosses", however, added he would suspend his membership in it just after it is registered. About 1,000 people took part in the congress; they adopted a manifesto, the party regulations and the program and elected the Political Council of 35 members.

Deputy of Parliament Temir Sariyev said the same day Bakiyev violates the constitution, according to which a president should not be a member of any political organization while in office. The Ministry of Justice registered the new party the same day, it had 1,035 members, and Bakiyev announced next morning he suspends his membership in it. The party announced on 16 October its leaders would be elected after the referendum, and three deputies to Bakiyev in the party - Elmira Ibrayimova, Vladimir Nifadyev and Avtandil Arabayev - would be on duty.

Several opposition parties announced the same day they would unite now and Moscow-based "Nezavisimaya Gazeta" reported on 19 October former Speaker of the Kyrgyz Parliament Omurbek Tekebayev could lead such a united party. Chief editor of the newspaper "Litsa" Bermet Bukasheva said on 17 October Bakiyev surpasses former President Askar Akayev - the pro-presidential forces did not call their party Alga, Kyrgyzstan! As a presidential one openly and did not name Akayev their chairman. RIA Novosti, Interfax, Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress, NG

16 October, Tuesday:

2. PRESS IN ARMENIA AND MOLDOVA IS FREER THAN IN KYRGYZSTAN. Paris-based Reporters Without Borders released on 16 October its sixth annual Worldwide Press Freedom Index 2007 measuring the level of press freedom in 169 countries throughout the world. Eritrea replaced North Korea in last place in it and of the 20 countries at the bottom of the index, seven are Asian - Pakistan (152nd), Sri Lanka (156th), Laos (161st), Vietnam (162nd), China (163rd), Burma (164th), and North Korea (168th), five are African - Ethiopia (150th), Equatorial Guinea (153rd), Libya (155th), Somalia (159th) and Eritrea (168th), four are in the Middle East - Syria (154th), Iraq (157th), Palestinian Territories (158th) and Iran (166th), three are former Soviet republics (Belarus, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan) and one is in the Americas - Cuba (165th). G8 members, except Russia, show slight improvement. Russia (144th) is not progressing. Anna Politkovskaya's murder in October 2006, the failure to punish those responsible for murdering journalists, and the still glaring lack of diversity in the media, especially the broadcast media, weighed heavily in the evaluation of press freedom in Russia.

Among the other former Soviet republics, Estonia is the best occupying the third place in the world and Latvia is the 12th, Lithuania 23rd, Georgia 66th, Armenia 77th and Moldova 81st. The other CIS countries are in the second half of the list - Ukraine 92nd, Kyrgyzstan 110th, Tajikistan 115th, Kazakhstan 125th, Azerbaijan 139th, Belarus 151st, Uzbekistan 160th, Turkmenistan 167th. The countries with the freest press in the world are Iceland and Norway. RSF

3. BAKIYEV CONSOLIDATES PRESIDENTIAL POWER. Russian "Kommersant" reported on 16 October, "Although Bakiev has been president of Kyrgyzstan for over two years, he only gained decisive power in April of this year, when he convinced opposition leader Almazbek Atambaev to become prime minister, this causing a schism in the opposition. In the autumn, Bakiev dissolved the parliament, which had occasionally opposed him, and the country's constitutional court rejected the last two editions of the Constitution passed by the parliament. He made amendments to the Constitution to return to himself the powers the parliament had taken away and held a referendum on the amendments and on a reform of the parliament". Kommersant

4. AK SHUMKAR PARTY CALLS ON VOTING AGAINST A NEW CONSTITUTION. The Ak Shumkar Party appealed to the nation on 16 October asking to vote against the new drafts of both constitution and Election Code, proposed by the authorities to be passed via a referendum set for 21 October. According to the party, the authorities commit unexampled judicial voluntarism reviving the old laws by the court rulings and the Constitutional Court allows establishing authoritarian regime as it did many times before. The Kyrgyz elite keeps silence while the authorities exclude from the constitution criminal punishment for power usurpation, stop decentralization of the power, make the judges more dependant on the president and turn a good idea of electing a parliament by party lists into a decoration of unlimited power of a president. The party, trying to avoid more dramatic consequences, asks people voting against the drafts. 24.kg, BPC

17 October, Wednesday:

5. REMITTANCES OF LABOR MIGRANTS SURPASS TOTAL AID BY DONORS AND DIRECT FOREIGN INVESTMENT. The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) released in Rome on 17 October, on the eve of the International Forum on Remittances 2007, which took place in Washington, DC, on 18-19 October, the first global study of remittances. It is said in it that migrants working in industrialized countries sent more than US$300 billion to developing nations in 2006. Donor nations provided $104 billion in aid to developing countries last year, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. Remittances are generated by some 150 million migrants who send money home regularly, typically between $100 and $300 at a time. The migrant remittances also surpassed foreign direct investment in developing countries, which last year totaled around $167 billion, according to the Institute of International Finance.

In 2006, Asia was the top destination of remittances, receiving more than $114 billion, followed by Latin America and the Caribbean ($68 billion), Eastern Europe ($51 billion), Africa ($39 billion) and the Near East ($29 billion). Taking nations individually, India received the most ($24.5 billion), followed by Mexico ($24.2 billion), China ($21 billion), the Philippines ($14.6 billion), and Russia ($13.7 billion). Among the CIS countries, Ukraine received the most (after Russia) remittances - $.4 billion, followed by Kazakhstan ($4.9 billion), Uzbekistan ($2.9 billion), Belarus ($2.3 billion), Azerbaijan ($1.8 billion), Georgia ($1.5 billion), Armenia ($1.1 billion), Moldova and Tajikistan ($1.0 billion both), Kyrgyzstan ($800 million) and Turkemnistan ($300 million).

However, the $13.7 billion received by Russia comprised 1.4 percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) only in 2006 and the highest figures are for Tajikistan - 36.7 percent, Moldova and Kyrgyzstan (31.4 percent to GDP both) and Uzbekistan - 17 percent. For other CIS countries the remittances are not significant for their economics and the figures are: 8 percent to GDP in Ukraine, 6.5 percent in Kazakhstan, 6.3 percent in Belarus, 3.4 percent in Turkmenistan. According to the Russian Bank, $6 billion was transferred from Russia abroad in 2006. IFAD, Kommersant, Rockefeller

18 October, Thursday:

6. MOSCOW SEEKS TO WEAKEN THE OSCE. Former US Assistant Secretary of State Richard Williamson wrote in the article "Russia Being Russia" issued in Washington-based TCS Daily on 18 October, "For those in power in totalitarian communist regimes the OSCE commitments were an annoyance but not a major impediment. However, as Russia has pursued its authoritarian drift in recent years, these OSCE obligations have proven intolerable. OSCE field missions and election observer missions have contributed to Georgia's Rose Revolution, Ukraine's Orange Revolution and the Tulip Revolution in Kyrgyzstan. In other words, the OSCE has helped democrats in these Near Abroad countries advance the March of Freedom. So for 4 years, Moscow has sought to weaken the OSCE; centralize control of field missions and render election observer missions impotent. Moscow has tried to redefine commitments on human rights, democracy and the rule of law so they would be meaningless". TCS Daily

7. REFERENDUM AIMS AT DISSOLVING THE PARLIAMENT. Ajdar Kurtov of the Russian Institute for Strategic Studies wrote in an article posted on the Russian site Stoletiye on 18 October that the Kyrgyz parliamentarians have been entrapped very smartly. After the authorities suppressed the opposition rallies earlier this year, the Constitutional Court invalidated the two constitutions adopted in the country after the Tulip Revolution and the country returned back to the constitution of the previous president, Askar Akayev. The new president continues the practice of Akayev and offers to adopt a new constitution through a referendum, while the people have not got time to acquaintance with the text properly while amendments to the constitution are also done in accordance with the Akayev's practice. The referendum set for 21 October aims at dissolving the parliament, because the president and all other authorities, with exception of the parliament, should keep their posts according to the text. Stoletiye

Foreign Aid this Week:

8. RUSSIA AND THE USA HELP KYRGYZSTAN. Russian Ambassador to Kyrgyzstan Valentin Vlason said on 16 October Russia would send equipment worth $1 million to the Kyrgyz national railroad company. On 17 October, the Security Assistance Office of the U.S. Embassy turned over HIV-prevention equipment to the Kyrgyz Armed Forces clinics, and a new library for police trainees was opened at the General Shabirov Center of the Ministry of the Interior in Bishkek, refurbished with help from the U.S. Embassy. The same day the U.S. Embassy granted $57,600 worth of Barrett communication equipment to the Border Service of Kyrgyzstan. Kabar, 24.kg, US Embassy

ALSO IN THE WEEK OF 14 - 20 OCTOBER 2007:

9. On 14 October, run-off election to parliament was held in the Balykchy constituency and Maksat Abakirov won a mandate collecting 51.36 percent of votes. The two by-elections to parliament were held in the Kara-Kulja and Kerme-Too constituencies the same day. Kurmantai Abdiyev and Duishenkul Chotonov in Kara-Kulja and Kubanychbek Nurmatov and Hulkarpasha Sabirova would contend in the run-offs on 28 October. Kabar, 24.kg, AKIpress

10. On 15 October, Erica Marat wrote on the site Eurasia Daily Monitor, "The Kyrgyz parliament still has a chance to cancel the referendum, although few MPs openly criticize Bakiyev’s constitutional project…. Meanwhile, the Central Elections Commission is working with outdated records of registered voters. For example, the commission’s records indicate some 330,000 voters in Bishkek, the Kyrgyz capital and the largest city in the country. However, most experts agree that roughly 1.2 million people work and live in Bishkek permanently". EDM

11. On 15 October, Mayor of Bishkek Daniyar Usenov said he would buy al the bread and flour business in Bishkek himself if the businesspersons do not stop raising bread prices. According to him, they buy flour from Kazakhstan for 9.8 soms per kilogram and sell it in Kyrgyzstan for 27 to 30 soms. Prime Minister Almaz Atambayev signed a decree on 18 October to dawn the VAT for food import to 10 percent. Kabar, 24.kg

12. On 16 October, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said at a meeting of the heads of local governments in Bishkek that the government is not able financing the local societies due to the expenditures for the parliament are too high. Kabar, 24.kg

13. On 16 October, the National Bank said the GDP growth in January-September was 8.5 percent and the industrial output increased by 6.5 percent while the growth of the agricultural product was 2.2 percent. The trade turnover reached $2,260 million, which was more than in the same period of the last year by 48.8 percent, however, export increased by 39.9 percent only and by 59.5 percent without counting gold. Kabar, 24.kg, Regnum, BPC

14. On 16-17 October, the Days of Kyrgyz Culture were held in Yekaterinburg, Russia. Kyrgyz State Secretary Adahan Madumarov decorated Governor Eduard Rossel with the Kyrgyz Order Danaker. Kabar, 24.kg

15. On 17 October, the prosecutor asked at the court on the Aksy Events, which began in Jalal-Abad on 1 October, for a 11-year sentence for former head of the Jalal-Abad Police Department Kubanychbek Tokobayev, a 10-ear sentence for former Deputy Minister of Interior Sadyrbek Dubanayev and a seven-year sentence for former Jalal-Abad Province Prosecutor Zootbek Kudaibergenov. 24.kg

16. On 17 October, Alen Ofoyo of Kyrgyzstan won the Eurasian title in Moscow in the WBKF Kickboxing defeating Sandris Thomson from Latvia. SportLenta

17. On 17-18 October, Principal Deputy to the US Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense Scott Schless and his Advisor Christopher Lozo visited Bishkek. They met with representatives of the Kyrgyz Ministry of Defense, the National Security Council and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, discussing security and defense cooperation issues. US Embassy, 24.kg

18. On 18 October, Reuters reported, "Analysts expect Bakiyev to call early elections as soon as December, though he has not said whether he will do so…. Bakiyev has been at loggerheads with parliament, which is packed with his opponents, elected under Akayev's rule". Reuters

19. On 18 October, Political Analyst Mars Sariyev said in an interview with AKIpress Agency that Bakiyev tries now becoming a nationwide leader and neutralizes any charismatic leaders. For instance, the appointment of Daniyar Usenov to the post of Bishkek mayor aims at neutralizing the Bishkek City Assembly and its Chairwoman Nurjamal Baibolova. In general, southern politicians use political technologies better that those from the north. AKIpress

20. On 18 October, Carol Williams, the Senate majority leader in the US state of Montana, who visited Kyrgyzstan on 27 September - 7 October, said, "Kyrgyzstan's efforts to emerge from the shadow of Russian politics are complicated by the country's president, Kurmanbek Bakiev, who is aligned with Russian President Vladimir Putin". However, "It is a little beacon struggling to make a democracy…. We should care about them… It is important to have a democratic country in that part of the world". The Missoulian

21. On 18 October, the government decided to complete construction of the Kambarata-2 hydro power station by 22 December 2009. The government would allot 3,500 million soms ($90 million) in 2007-2009 and the Electric Stations Company would add 1,500 million more. Kabar, 24.kg

22. On 18 October, Elzada Sarkashkayeva of the Agency for State Property said 7,240 enterprises, or 72.5 percent, were privatized in Kyrgyzstan by 1 October 2007 and the level of privatization is 97.6 percent in catering, 88.4 percent in industry and 48.8 percent in non-industry sphere. Kabar. 24.kg

23. On 18 October, the Kyrgyz football national team defeated in Bishkek the Jordan team (2 to 0) in the match to join the 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign. The second leg will be in Jordan on 28 October. Goal.com, AKIpress

24. On 19 October, the Institute for War and Peace Reporting wrote that as voters in Kyrgyzstan prepare to go to the polls to approve or reject a new constitution on 21 October, analysts say the system used for compiling the electoral roll remains deeply flawed and is obsolete and open to abuse. IWPR

25. On 19 October, Kyrgyz Greens were not able holding a protest rally under slogans "No to Khanstitution!" and "Raise, the hungry nation!" - only about ten people come. The party said the police prevented it checking everyone at the approach to the central square and detained the two their members - Arthur Langolf and Kanybek Sarymsakov. The party also plans suing Mayor of Bishkek City Daniyar Usenov who said on 15 October that some organization intended using the economic situation in their political aims on the eve of the referendum. Police raided on the party office in Bishkek on 18 October. AKIpress, 24.kg, Regnum

26. On 19 October, the Kyrgyz Prosecutor General's Office said law enforcers have so far launched 106 criminal cases against about 70 former President Askar Akayev's relatives and associates, and the office had previously submitted to Russia two requests for the extradition of Aidar Akayev, son of the ex-president, and they were rejected by Russian prosecutors, however, the efforts would be continued. Kabar, 24.kg, RIA Novosti, Itar-Tass, Kommersant

27. On 19 October, Russian Movie Director Sergei Bodrov attended the premiere of his new film Mongol about Genghis Khan in Bishkek. Kyrgyz stunt men and Cameraman Hasan Kadyraliyev took part in the shooting the film. 24.kg

28. On 20 October, it became known that the Ester Holding Group won a case against the Kyrgyz government on the Bishkek City Court. The group bought the Tash-Komur plant of poly crystalline government silicon and the Kyrgyz government wanted to nationalize it. The Ministry of Industry said it would appeal to the Supreme Court. AKIpress

29. On 20 October, the 29th Tokyo Film Festival began; it will last till 28 October. The film Sunduk Predkov by Kyrgyz Director Nurbek Egen represents Kyrgyzstan at its Central Asian part. Vzglyad

50. Appointments and dismissals: On 18 October, Prime Minister Almaz Atanbayev dismissed Jumasarlyk Nurjanov from the post of director of the Agency for State Reserves and Purchases. On 20 October, President Kurmanbek Bakiyev appointed Tursun Turdumambetov head of the Agency for State Property replacing Almaz Iamanaliyev. Kabar, 24.kg

Naryn AIYP.

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