2020 Kyrgyzstan protests
|2020 Kyrgyzstan protests|
|Date||5 October 2020– present (3 weeks and 3 days)|
|Methods||Demonstrations, civil disobedience|
|Parties to the civil conflict|
The 2020 Kyrgyzstan protests began on 5 October 2020 in response to the 2020 parliamentary election that were perceived by protestors as unfair. The results of the election were annulled on 6 October 2020.
Background[edit source | edit]
Kyrgyzstan had faced two revolutions during the early 21st century, including the Tulip Revolution in 2005 and the Kyrgyz Revolution of 2010. In August 2020, Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov indicated that the parliamentary elections would not be postponed despite the coronavirus pandemic. During the elections, several parties were accused of buying votes. Several journalists also reported that they had been harassed or attacked. Out of the parties that made it into parliament, only United Kyrgyzstan consistently opposes the incumbent government led by Jeenbekov.
Political analysts have tied the 2020 protests to a socio-economic divide between Kyrgyzstan's agrarian south and more-developed north. Of the initial election results, 100 of the 120 seats were filled by southerners who supported Jeenbekov. During Jeenbekov's presidency, Kyrgyzstan joined the Russian-led Eurasian Economic Union and closed the American Transit Center at Manas that was used for the War in Afghanistan.
Timeline[edit source | edit]
5 October[edit source | edit]
The protests began on Monday, 5 October 2020, with a crowd of 1,000 people, that grew to at least 5,000 people by evening in Bishkek (the capital of Kyrgyzstan) in protest against results and allegations of vote-buying in the 2020 parliamentary election. After nightfall, following a police operation to clear the Ala-Too Square of protesters with tear gas and water cannons, protesters allegedly attacked police officers with rocks and injured two of them. Former President Almazbek Atambayev was freed from prison.
6 October[edit source | edit]
On early Tuesday morning of 6 October 2020, the protesters reclaimed control of the Ala-Too Square in central Bishkek. They also managed to seize the White House and Supreme Council buildings nearby, throwing paper from windows and setting them on fire, also entering the President's offices. A protestor died and 590 others were injured. In addition, they freed the former President Almazbek Atambayev from jail.
On 6 October, following the protests, the electoral authorities in the country annulled the results of the parliamentary elections. Central Election Commission member Gulnara Jurabaeva also revealed the commission was considering self-dissolution.
In the meantime, opposition groups claimed to be in power after seizing government buildings in the capital, in which several provincial governors have reportedly resigned. President Sooronbay Jeenbekov said that he faced a coup d'état, then he told the BBC, that he was "ready to give the responsibility to strong leaders".
7 October[edit source | edit]
According to the Ministry of Healthcare, no fewer than 768 people injured during the protests have been treated by the country's hospitals and clinics as of Wednesday morning. According to Reuters, at least three distinct groups have now attempted to claim leadership.
Reactions[edit source | edit]
China[edit source | edit]
On 7 October, the Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said, "As a friendly neighbor and comprehensive strategic partner, China sincerely hopes that all parties in Kyrgyzstan can resolve the issue according to law through dialogue and consultation, and push for stability in Kyrgyzstan as soon as possible."
Russia[edit source | edit]
On 7 October, Russian President Vladimir Putin said they are concerned by political unrest taking place in neighboring Kyrgyzstan and hoped for a swift return to stability. Russia also gave assurances it was in touch with all the sides in the conflict and hoped that democratic process would be restored.
See also[edit source | edit]
- Kyrgyz Revolution of 2010
- 2013 Kyrgyzstan protests
- 2020s in political history
- List of protests in the 21st century
References[edit source | edit]