Kyrgyz PM quits to run as president

"I am resigning due to the fact that I am running for the presidency. I do not have the moral right to remain in this post," Jeenbekov said in a speech to parliament shown by state broadcaster KTR.

Kyrgyz PM quits to run as president

World Bulletin / News Desk

Kyrgyzstan's Prime Minister Sooronbai Jeenbekov announced his resignation on Monday, saying he planned to run for the presidency in a hotly contested poll in the ex-Soviet Central Asian country in October.

While Russia-allied Kyrgyzstan is seen as the most democratic state in a region dominated by long-ruling autocrats, it has also been the most politically volatile in recent times.

The Muslim-majority country experienced two revolutions that unseated presidents in 2005 and 2010 followed by ethnic violence that left more than 400 people dead.

Jeenbekov, 58, is running for the Social Democratic Party of Kyrgyzstan which is closely aligned with outgoing President Almazbek Atambayev. He has served as prime minister since April 2016.

Atambayev accepted his resignation Monday, meaning the process of forming a new government will now begin. 

Southerner Jeenbekov will face stiff competition in the October 15 vote from two former prime ministers who hail from the north of the country as well as prominent politicians from his home region.   

Fifty-six candidates submitted documents to the Central Election Commission by this month's deadline, although far fewer candidates are expected to appear on the final ballot paper. 

Many analysts have predicted a second round as no single candidate is certain to initially receive more than half of the vote required to win. 

While leaders of the other ex-Soviet "Stans" are generally expected to die in office, Kyrgyzstan's presidents are restricted to a single six-year term under the current constitution. 

Two prominent candidates in opposition to Atambayev received prison sentences this month with both claiming the verdicts were politically motivated ahead of the vote. 

Nationalist Sadyr Japarov and nominally socialist lawmaker Omurbek Tekebayev were given 11-and-a-half and eight-year prison sentences on kidnapping and graft charges respectively. 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 21 Ağustos 2017, 15:52