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Kyrgyz Parliament Convenes After Protests

BISHKEK, November 13, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- The Kyrgyz parliament convenes today for the first time since a week of opposition demonstrations calling for the resignation of President Kurmanbek Bakiev.

The demonstrations, which ended on November 9, forced Bakiev to sign a new constitution that reduces presidential powers and gives parliament more control over the appointment of a government.

Prime Minister Feliks Kulov, however, said on November 10 that the document was adopted under pressure and needs clarification.

Opposition parliamentarians today said other laws need to be urgently amended so they don't contradict the new constitution.

They also are demanding that law enforcement agencies investigate an incident on November 12, when unknown attackers threw hand grenades into the courtyard of the home of opposition lawmaker Isa Omurkulov.

No one was injured in the blasts.

Omurkulov told RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service on November 12 that he does not believe the Kyrgyz authorites were behind the incident.

Meanwhile, acting Interior Minister Omurbek Subanaliev told parliament today he is "not yet ready" to sack Bishkek police chief Moldomusa Kongantiev. Subanaliev, who was appointed on November 6, has pledged to dismiss Kongantiev.

The removal of Kongantiev and his brother, Prosecutor-General Kambaraly Kongantiev, were among the opposition's main demands.

(RFE/RL 13.xi.06)

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