3,000 protesters seize government building in Kyrgyzstan's capital, Bishkek

The people want their presidential candidate to be registered for the pre-election race

About 500 followers of the candidate for the position of the president of Kyrgyzstan, Urmat Baryktabasov, seized the building of the Kyrgyz government in the republic's capital, Bishkek, today. Urmat Baryktabasov was denied registration in the election campaign. His followers decided to take extreme measures demanding their candidate should be registered for the pre-election race of the Kyrgyz president, Interfax reports. Special police units, wielding batons and shields, ousted the protesters from the building of the Kyrgyz government.

The protesters attempted to take the building again, when they broke through the enclosure. The police had to use tear-gas to resist the attack; the assaulters started throwing bottles and stones at the police. The military men had to open fire in the air and use smoke blocks to push the crowd of people off from the building, RIA Novosti said.

A spokesperson for the headquarters of the dismissed candidate said that the people originally intended to express their protest in the form of a peaceful demonstration only. “We only wanted to have our candidate registered for the forthcoming election again, but nobody wanted to talk to us, and the troops used tear gas against our followers,” the source from the candidate's headquarters said.

Up to 3,000 people are currently staying on the square in front of the building of the Kyrgyz government at the moment. Spokespeople for the Central Election Committee of Kyrgyzstan and deputies of the republic's government reportedly managed to come to consent in the solution of the conflict question with the protesters.

Employees of the house of the government are leaving the building. Vendors are closing their shops situated near the area of the massive demonstration, taking their goods with them to avoid possible looting. The protesters broke several windows in the building of the government, Newsru reports.

”The guards possess all necessary means to defend the building: water jets, rubber and gas bullets, etc,” acting head of the Kyrgyz Ministry for Internal Affairs, Murat Sutalinov told reporters. The official added that law-enforcement agencies of the republic would take all necessary measures to protect Bishkek residents from looters. “If the turmoil takes a different form, there will be other measures taken against the instigators of the action of protest in order they could be called into criminal account,” Sutalinov said.

The situation in Kyrgyz capital aggravated in the beginning of the current week, when the Central Election Committee of the republic denied registration to businessmen Urmat Baryktabasov. Mr. Baryktabasov is a citizen of another republic, Kazakhstan.

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Author`s name Olga Savka