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Yearbook 2000

Kyrgyzstan. In February and March elections were held for both chambers of Parliament. The largest was the resurrected Communist Party, the Party of Kyrgyzstan Communists, whose support increased in step with the economic difficulties. But there was confusion about the election result. OSCE observers explained that the election had not gone right, and the opposition said it had been deprived of a number of mandates due to election fraud.

2000 Kyrgyzstan

According to COUNTRYAAH, Feliks Kulov, leader of the country's second largest party, Dignity, was one of those who did not come into parliament, and he testified that voters were mutilated and threatened in his constituency. When Kulov's supporters demonstrated, the authorities responded by arresting Kulov and accusing him of abuse of power during his tenure as Minister of Security in 1997-98. Another opposition leader, Danijar Usenov, was arrested, accused of involvement in a fight with officials at Bishkek Airport in 1996.

When US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright visited Kyrgyzstan in April, she stated with reference to Kulov that political opponents should not be made criminals. In August, Kulov was acquitted by a military court of the allegations of abuse of power, but the verdict was later rescinded. However, Kulov remained on the loose, but was prevented, along with about twenty other prospective candidates from running in the presidential election this fall.

In August, Islamic rebels entered Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan from Afghanistan via Tajikistan. Struggles continued in Kyrgyzstan for over a month, and authorities claimed that the rebels lost 120 dead and 200 wounded, while 34 Kyrgyz soldiers were killed.

In October, President Akajev was re-elected for a new five-year term. According to official data, he received close to 75% of the vote, while the Deputy Speaker of Parliament Socialist Party leader Omurbek Tekebajev received 14%. A further four candidates were allowed to stand. Election workers from the opposition were arrested by police or prevented from monitoring voting, and international observers reported extensive electoral fraud. The OSCE explained that the election had not been fair and free.

Kyrgyzstan's GDP grew by 5% during the first nine months of the year, and both industrial production and exports increased significantly. However, agriculture did not go well.

An international aid organization, the European Children's Trust, estimated that 88% of the country's population lives in poverty.

In December, President Akajev appointed a new Prime Minister, Kurmanbek Bakiev, who was approved by Parliament.

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