Kyrgyz Opposition Increasing Pressure on the Bakiyev-Kulov Tandem
Felix Kulov – Prime Minister of Kyrgyzstan
A press conference yesterday by the “For Reform” bloc of opposition politicians in Kyrgyzstan reflected increased aggressiveness against the Bakiyev-Kulov government. Aside from reiterating the group’s decision to give Bakiyev a one-month ultimatum on promised reforms, the group also stated that they were ready to list the assets that had gone directly from the Akayev family to the Bakiyev family (A to B as has been said in Kyrgyzstan)without legal justification. It is difficult to know what will happen of this over the next month, but negotiations will certainly be going on behind the scenes. Already, Omurbek Abdrakhmanov of the “For Reform” bloc met with President Bakiyev to discuss the growing tension between the government and opposition. But the opposition is already also talking about a transfer of power publicly, noting that if Bakiyev were to step down, there would not be a power vacuum as in March 2005. First, the leadership would pass to the Prime Minister Kulov, but if he were to also resign or be found unfit to run the country, it would pass on to the speaker of the parliament. Given that Kulov’s own party, Ar-Namys, is involved in the “For Reform” bloc, one wonders about Kulov’s actual position on the latest political struggles. Afterall, it is not out of the realm of possibility that Kulov could emerge from this mess as the next president of Kyrgyzstan.