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Kyrgyzstan Review, 10 years ago




[10.04.23] Kyrgyz Opposition Leader Transferred from Detention Facility To Prison

Former Vice President and head of the opposition Ar-Namys Party Feliks Kulov, sentenced to a lengthy prison term after being convicted of abuse of office was transferred from a temporary detention cell at the National Security Service preliminary-investigation facility to prison on 8 April. Kulov and Ar-Namys had been demanding the transfer. According to Kyrgyz law, Kulov should have been transferred after the Bishkek City Court upheld an earlier verdict in October 2002.
 
Kulov's party insists the charges against Kulov were politically motivated. Some of his relatives were forced to emigrate and party members complain of harassment by the authorities. Kulov tried to run against President Askar Akaev in the October 2000 presidential election, and was considered to be Akaev's most credible opponent. Kulov remains a figure popular with the opposition, which periodically demands his release.
 
His lawyer told RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service that it remains unclear how much of his 10-year sentence Kulov still has to serve, since his term was cut by one-third under an amnesty. He is one of the opposition leaders who strongly supports the U.S.-led military operation in Iraq.
 
Eurasianet, April 10, 2003

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