Kyrgyzstan’s president moves down amid political crisis

FILE In this file photo taken on Friday, Aug. 9, 2019, Kyrgyzstan's President Sooronbai Jeenbekov speaks at the Eurasian Economic Union Intergovernmental Council in Cholpon-Ata, Kyrgyzstan. The president of Kyrgyzstan announced his resignation in a bid to end the turmoil that has engulfed the Central Asian nation after a disputed parliamentary election. In a statement Thursday, Oct. 15, 2020 released by his office. (Yekaterina Shtukina, Sputnik, Government Pool Photo via AP, File)

MOSCOW — Kyrgyzstan President Sooronbai Jeenbekov declared his resignation Thursday in an attempt to end the turmoil that has engulfed the Central Asian country after a contested parliamentary election.

Jeenbekov, who has faced calls to resign from protesters and political opponents, said in a statement released by his office which holding power was not”value the integrity of the nation and stability in society.”

“For me, peace in Kyrgyzstan, the nation’s integrity, the unity of the people, and also the calm from the society is over all else,” Jeenbekov explained.

Kyrgyzstan, a nation of 6.5 million people situated on the boundary with China, was plunged into chaos after an Oct. 4 vote in which election officials state was spanned by pro-government parties.

Protesters subsequently took over government buildings, looting a few offices, and also the Central Election Commission nullified the election. The opposition then declared plans to oust Jeenbekov and shape a new administration.

Jeenbekov maintained a very low profile in the first couple of days following the vote, employing the infighting among protest leaders to dig.

The movement eased tensions in town, where residents feared looting that followed previous uprisings and started forming vigilante groups to protect the land. Shops and banks which were closed have reopened.

In a bid to stem the unrest, Jeenbekov on Wednesday supported the appointment of Sadyr Zhaparov, a former lawmaker who had been freed from prison by demonstrators a week, since the nation’s new prime minister and Zhaparov’s new Cabinet.

Zharov promised his fans to push Jeenbekov’s resignation and held discussions with the president after Jeenbekov signed on his appointment. Following the discussions, Jeenbekov stated he’d remain in the job until the political situation in Kyrgyzstan stabilizes.

Zharov maintained on Wednesday he’d meet with the president on Thursday to convince him to resign.

It was not immediately clear if the meeting happened, but the protests demanding Jeenbekov’s resignation lasted Thursday morning.

Jeenbekov stated in his announcement that the problem in Bishkek” remains tense” even though the new Cabinet was appointed the day before, which he does not wish to innovate these anxieties.

“On one side, you will find the protesters, on the flip — law enforcement. Military personnel and law enforcement agencies are bound to use weapons to guard the State Home. In cases like this, blood will be shed, it’s inevitable,” Jeenbekov’s announcement said. “I don’t wish to go down in history as a president that shot his citizens and lose weight “

The chaos marks the third time in 15 years which demonstrators have proceeded to oust a government in Kyrgyzstan, among the weakest countries to emerge in the former Soviet Union.

As from the uprisings that ousted presidents in 2005 and 2010, the present protests are pushed by clan rivalries which form the nation’s politics.