BISHKEK, KOMPAS.com – Back off Sooronbay Jeenbekov is not the first time the president has resigned his post Kyrgyzstan. There are already at least 6 coup d’etat something that happened there in the last 15 years.
Jeenbekov resigned on Thursday (15/10/2020) after 10 days of unrest over disputed parliamentary election results.
The following is a summary of some of the crises and revolutions in the Central Asian country over the past 15 years AFP.
1. 2005: The Tulip Revolution
On March 24, 2005, thousands of people protesting the election results and corruption invaded government headquarters, forcing President Akayev, who has been in power for 15 years, to flee.
Akayev, who was the first leader after Kyrgyzstan’s independence from the Soviet Union, is accused of organizing elections and filling parliament with family members and loyalists.
Four months later one of the leaders of the rebellion, Kurmanbek Bakiyev, was elected president with 90 percent of the vote.
The term “Tulip Revolution” was used by Akayev himself in a speech warning that there should not be a “color revolution” in Kyrgyzstan, as has happened in other former Soviet bloc countries.
2. 2010: Overthrown regime
In 2010 Akayev’s successor, Bakiyev, fled to Belarus after street protests raged bloodily to overthrow his government and left nearly 100 people dead.
On April 7, thousands of protesters forced their way into the president’s office, before taking control of television headquarters and attacking parliament. They also set fire to the prosecutor’s office.
Bakiyev’s house was searched and set on fire after he fled to his hometown, Jalal Abad.
After trying to gather his supporters in the south, Bakiyev finally resigned and fled. He was sentenced in absentia along with his younger brother who was jailed for life in 2014 for violence against demonstrators.
3. 2010: Interethnic violence
In June 2010, deadly violence between ethnic Uzbeks and Kyrgyz broke out in the main cities in the south, namely Osh and Jalal Abad.
Around Uzbekistan was burned and they were also attacked by heavy weapons, while most of the Kyrgyz zone survived.
Over the course of four days nearly 500 people were killed and about 400,000 displaced, with many of the refugees heading to neighboring Uzbekistan.
Historically heated relations between Uzbeks and Kyrgyzstan have been fueled by resentment over the trade grips of the Uzbek minority.
Bishkek rejected demands from the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) to investigate claims that the army and police played a role and helped carry out the violence.
4. 2010: First woman president
After Bakiyev fled, diplomat Roza Otunbayeva led the interim government and was later appointed interim president.
It helped stabilize the country before the 2011 general election won by Almazbek Atambayev.
5. 2019: Former president in prison
President Atambayev (2011-2017) is the third consecutive head of state since independence in 1991, ending the term with turmoil.
He was accused of commuting the criminal boss’s illegal release, and was sentenced to 11 years in prison in June 2020 after the trial was deemed part of a power struggle with his successor and former ally, Jeenbekov.
Atambayev was arrested in August 2019 after two special forces raided his villa near the capital. His prosecution sparked fears of further unrest in Kyrgyzstan.
6.2020: Recent dramatic changes
Atambayev was released from his cell along with several other prominent politicians by demonstrators in the early hours of Tuesday (13/10/2020), by his supporters protesting the results of the parliamentary elections on Sunday (4/10/2020).
They accuse President Jeenbekov of buying votes to stay in power.
At least one person was killed and hundreds injured as thousands took to the streets calling for a new vote and for Jeenbekov to resign.
Election results have since been canceled, with Jeenbekov saying he is ready to step down to end the crisis.
On 10 October Atambayev was again captured by special forces. A populist politician, Sadyr Japarov, was also released in the post-election riots and assigned to be prime minister.
Under pressure from Japarov, Jeenbekov finally resigned on October 15.
Also read: What is the Coup?