- elections - Kyrgyzstan
Constitutional referendum set for June and presidential poll for October
Omurbek Tekebayev, deputy head of the interim government, announced that the government would hold a referendum on a new constitution on June 27 and elections for president on October 10. International leaders had urged Kyrgyzstan to hold elections.
AFP - Kyrgyzstan's new interim government said on Thursday it would hold a referendum on a new constitution on June 27 and elections for parliament and president on October 10.
The dates were announced on national television by Omurbek Tekebayev, deputy head of the interim government, which took power two weeks ago in a popular uprising which ousted president Kurmanbek Bakiyev.
The United States and European Union had urged the interim government to hold elections in order to restore stability in Kyrgyzstan.
Tekebayev said the new constitution to be presented to voters in the June 27 referendum would make Kyrgyzstan a parliamentary republic, reduce the powers of the president and prevent authoritarianism.
"In the new draft, the state and political system will be set up to prevent concentration of power in one hands," Tekebayev said.
"The president will lose his immunity and his family will not be subsidized by the state. The head of state will live on his own salary."
The interim Kyrgyz government has accused Bakiyev and his allies of ordering the shooting of demonstrators in the early April uprising in which 85 people were killed, as well as corruption and vote fraud.
Bakiyev is currently in exile in Belarus. Kyrgyzstan, a mountainous former Soviet republic, has a history of political instability.