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Kyrgyz Government Intimidates Opposition Campaigns
Opposition leaders complain that Bakiyev regime is disrupting their campaigns
Ryskeldi Satkeev (ryskeldi64)     Print Article 
Published 2009-06-23 03:55 (KST)   
This article is lightly edited.  <Editor's Note>
The beating of an Atambaev election campaign activist was reported on June 19 in the Toktogul province of Kyrgyzstan. The incident took place around 9 p.m. when Salavat Anikeev (Atambaev campaign province manager) was conducting visits to the local election districts.

Atambaev presidential election headquarters stated that the activist was followed by a white SUV which pressed the victim's automobile to pull over on the freeway. Anikeev was dragged out of his vehicle by two unknown individuals while he tried to make a telephone call for help. Attackers brutally beat the victim and smashed his cellular phone. They warned on further consequences if Anikeev failed to quit the Atambaev campaign.

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This is not a first warning Anikeev has received from the local authorities since volunteering for opposition candidate Atambaev who is running for the the July 23 Presidential election. Previously, the Toktogul province mayor has threatened Anikeev by pressing charges against him and file paperwork with the local Prosecutor's office. The activist responded that he did not break the law by campaigning for an opposition candidate.

There have been regular reports of attacks, assaults, harassment and intimidation against Atambaev campaign activists around the country since the beginning of the presidential elections in Kyrgyzstan. On June 18, Kyrgyz authorities in Talas province arrested 28 opposition activists who tried to meet the current president Kurmanbek Bakiev.

Another organized assault on opposition members and activists by Kyrgyz authorities was reported in Issyk Kul province where the UOM (United Opposition Movement) planned to have a convention. The province mayor and local law enforcement agency chief have been spotted by observers as well as reporters organizing violent attacks on UOM members. One prominent UOM leader, Omurbek Tekebaev, has been arrested by the local police for a few hours without charges for questioning. Video reports have showed the role of the local authorities in witch hunting.

Activists for the opposition candidate Atambaev campaign, have been intimidated and harassed around the country by the local authorities on the regular basis. Chief-strategist for the Atambaev campaign, Bakyt Beshimov has repeatedly expressed concerns over Kyrgyz Government's tactics against the opposition movement since the election campaign began.
Atambaev election headquarters in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
www.sdpk.info.ru
These facts are available on SDPK's (Social Democratic Party of Kyrgyzstan) website http://www.sdpk.info/ru/ (a direct link http://www.sdpk.info/ru/PressCenter/Vision/item_275)
Jamestown foundation mentions the incidents here: http://www.jamestown.org/single/?no_cache=1&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=35091
©2009 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Ryskeldi Satkeev

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