ROAR: “Bakiyev’s page in Kyrgyzstan’s history should be closed”

As the parties that won the parliamentary elections prepare to form a coalition, analysts doubt that the distribution of mandates reflects the real alignment of forces.

The Ata Zhurt party (Native Land) has become the winner of the parliamentary elections held in Kyrgyzstan on Sunday, winning almost nine per cent of the vote. However, the party will have to share power with other political forces in the new government.

The Social Democrats led by former Prime Minister Almazbek Atambayev garnered more than eight per cent. They are followed by Ar-Namys (Dignity) party led by another former head of the government Feliks Kulov.

The Republic party headed by the former first deputy Prime Minister Omurbek Babanov and the Ata Meken (Homeland) led by the former parliament speaker Omurbek Tekebayev also entered parliament.

The main issue is how stable the new government – and the situation in the country – may be after the elections. Observers are discussing not only the possible structure of the government, but also the role the former President Kurmanbek Bakiyev may play in the country.

The Republic party has said it would not allow other political forces to “have revenge.” “We will not permit Kurmanbek Bakiyev’s return to the country,” the party’s leader Omurbek Babanov said on Tuesday. He described the former president as “a page in history that should be closed.

Analysts say that the forces that entered parliament should be interested in consensus. Their leaders “will just have to come to terms on a nomination for prime minister,” believes Andrey Grozin of the Institute of CIS Countries.

However, the alignment of forces after the election does not mean that a way has been found “for leading the country out of the crisis,” he told Interfax news agency.

The country cannot rely on foreign investment if the parties are not able to reach the agreement on the prime minister and the government, the analyst believes.

At the same time, Grozin predicted that in the spring the conflicts between clans may spark again “with an even greater intensity.”

The southern clans have consolidated their positions, and the first place won by the Ata-Zhurt party has proved it, the analyst noted. This party of the South has also managed to win support of certain electorate in the North, he added.

Ata-Zhurt was labeled as “nationalist” in some Western media, partly because it had promised to insist on the withdrawal of the transit center from Manas, Grozin noted.

Ar-Namys and the Republic party are seen as pro-Russian, and they raised the issue of cooperation with Moscow during the campaign. Their success was a surprise for many sociologists, Grozin noted.

Some analysts believe Kulov will hold “a golden share” in the new parliament. There are plenty of reasons why he may refuse to enter the possible coalition with the Ata Zhurt and the Republic party, said political analyst Ivan Preobrazhensky.

In particular, Kulov’s party campaigned with antinationalist slogans, and was supported by representatives of the country’s Uzbek diaspora, the analyst told Rosbalt news agency.

Some observers also believe that the current distribution of deputies’ mandates does not reflect the real political situation. It is not ruled out that after the elections, some Kyrgyz parties will start to “buy” deputies and “the sizes of factions will change,” Sergey Mikheev of the Center for Political Technologies believes.

Many observers also warn that the parties that failed to enter the parliament may provoke instability if their complaints about irregularities and the use of administrative resources are not heard.

On Tuesday, the leadership of Butun-Kyrgyzstan party, which failed to get into parliament, already had to explain the actions of their supporters to block the Bishkek-Osh motorway, which links the northern and southern regions.

The party “cannot control this process,” its leader Adakhan Madumarov said. Another party’s leader, Miroslav Niyazov, was quoted by Interfax as saying that the Central Election Commission and the interim government “are acting as the main source of destabilization” because they had failed to prevent irregularities during the elections.

However, the leader of the Ata Zhurt Kamchybek Tashiyev described the elections as “honest and transparent.” The party is ready to create a coalition with any political parties that have won the elections “for the sake of continuing stability and peace,” he said on Tuesday.

Sergey Borisov,
Russian Opinion and Analysis Review, RT