Former Kyrgyz President Atambayev faces new charges
Former Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev has officially become a suspect in four criminal cases, including clashes between his supporters and law enforcement officials on August 7-8, his lawyer Sergei Slesarev told Interfax on Wednesday.
“Today, the military prosecutor’s office of Kyrgyzstan sent two more notifications of a charge of committing a crime in the modernization of Bishkek’s CHP and regarding the transfer to the ownership of the Forum building in Bishkek, there are several episodes in them, including corruption. Atambayev is currently a suspect in four criminal cases, "said Slesarev.
The lawyer noted that two more cases relate to the events of August 7-8 in the village of Koy-Tash and the release in 2013 of Chechen kingpin Aziz Batukaev.
According to Slesarev, the Military Prosecutor’s Office on Thursday intends to deliver notifications in several other cases. "The speed of the investigation is surprising, because Atambayev used to be a witness in the Batukaev case," the lawyer said. The ex-president faces a sentence of life imprisonment.
The Forum is an office building in Bishkek where the headquarters of the Social Democratic Party (SDPK) founded by Atambayev and the April television station, owned by the former president, are located.
The parliament of Kyrgyzstan on June 27 voted to deprive Almazbek Atambayev of the immunity and status of the ex-president, which makes it possible to prosecute him. The lawyer of the ex-president of Kyrgyzstan Slesarev called the decision of the deputies inconsistent with the Constitution of the country, and the former head of state three times ignored the invitation to appear for questioning at the Ministry of Internal Affairs, saying that he was subjected to political persecution by the current leadership of the republic.
On the evening of August 7, the Kyrgyz special services began an operation to detain Atambayev at his residence in the village of Koy-Tash, 20 kilometers from the capital. They used against the supporters of the former leader of special equipment, they returned fire. Authorities claimed that security forces used only rubber bullets when firing. At the same time, one of the special forces, Wson Niyazbekov, was wounded in the heart during a shootout and died. Five more security officers were injured.
According to authorities, Atambaev personally conducted targeted fire on special forces. However, the ex-president himself previously claimed that he tried to shoot not in the direction of people.
After the second assault the next day, Atambayev surrendered to law enforcement officers and was taken to the Main Investigation Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the republic.
The country's prosecutor general Zamir Beishekeyev said that Atambayev was accused of several particularly serious crimes, including organizing riots, organizing murders, organizing hostage-taking, and organizing an attempted murder and violence against law enforcement officials. According to Attorney General Otkurbek Dzhamshitov, Atambayev is also suspected of illicit trafficking in weapons and ammunition.
Finally, Orozbek Opumbayev, head of the State Committee for National Security (SCNS) of Kyrgyzstan, accused Atambayev of attempting a coup, AKIpress reports.