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Kyrgyzstan Review, 10 years ago

[11.02.23] US Watchdog Criticizes Kyrgyz Referendum

In a statement released on 4 February, the National Democratic Institute (NDI) highlighted what it characterized as major shortcomings in the preparations for the 2 February referendum on draft constitutional amendments, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reported. Those shortcomings included the appointment in early January of expert group that amended the previously agreed-on draft changes and the announcement of the date for the referendum only three weeks in advance. The statement noted that the draft amendments strengthen the power of the president vis-a-vis the government and the parliament. In October, at the invitation of the Kyrgyz government, the NDI made written recommendations concerning the conduct of the referendum, but those recommendations were ignored, the statement noted.
By Abe Rein, Eurasianet, February 11, 2003

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