The tragic events, which happened in the southern Jalalabad province of Kyrgyzstan on March 17-18, provoked great concern and criticism of the Kyrgyz public as well as the international community and certainly of the Kyrgyz opposition. As a response to these bloody events, the People’s Congress of Kyrgyzstan, which unites the four opposition parties Ata-Meken, El, Erkindik and Ar-Namys, held a meeting on March 23. The participants of the meeting took five decisions, which if all are implemented, would bring radical changes to the political life of country.
Apart from the members of the People’s Congress, the leaders of the Communist party, Respublica party, Asaba party and Legislative Assembly deputies Azimbek Beknazarov and Ishenbai Kadyrbekov took part in the meeting. The five decisions that the participants came up with demand the following: 1) the Kyrgyz President and the government must resign; 2) presidential elections must be held ahead of time and voters’ signatures must be collected for this purpose; 3) apart from parliamentary and state commissions, a special public commission must be formed to investigate the circumstances of the March 17-18 events; 4) the results of the investigation must be examined by a public court; 5) a public congress must convene, in which all sectors of society be represented.
The leader of the Erkindik party and the Chairman of the newly established public commission Topchubek Turgunaliev explained the reasons why these decisions had been taken. According to Turgunaliev, the Kyrgyz President and the government must resign because he has neither political nor moral right to rule the nation any longer. Because neither the parliamentary nor the state commissions are likely to be effective, a special public commission should be established. The work of the parliamentary commission is suffering due to the internal divisions and disagreements. The state commission in its turn must be dissolved as it consists of those people, who are themselves responsible for the killings of people. The public commission consists of Parliament deputies, journalists and human rights activists. A public court, which will be formed at a public congress, will examine the results of the investigation and it will try people responsible for the bloodshed. It will involve lawyers and experienced and authoritative representatives of the society. “We know that the government may ignore what we are doing and the public court’s decision. The fact that the government is calling its own people, who were acting within the frame of their constitutional rights, extremists, terrorists and demagogues, is forcing us to take these actions. Our goal is to find out the truth and deliver it to the people of Kyrgyzstan as well as to the international community”, said Turgunaliev.
Meanwhile, the public commission has started an investigation into the circumstances of the March 17-18 events. Its members met with the people involved in the events – with the wounded people, their relatives, as well as the relatives of the killed people and with local doctors and policemen. At a press conference held on April 2, the commission members told what they have come up with so far. According to Turgunaliev, who leads the public commission, the bloodshed was planned by the authorities. The district authorities asked doctors of the local hospital in the morning before the events began, to be ready to receive wounded people. The police implemented a special operation known as “Typhoon”, which gives the police the right to kill people. According to the public commission, the Kyrgyz President was aware of these plans.
The People Congress and people, who are supportive of the actions of the Congress, are implementing what they have decided. The public congress will convene on April 17-18. The Congress will soon start the campaign of collecting voters’ signatures to hold early presidential elections. Thus the second decision partly, the fourth and fifth decisions are to be implemented soon, while the third one is already being implemented. However, the public is anxious about the first decision too, as without its implementation it is afraid it will not see those “radical” changes.