Kyrgyz president: I have not resigned

MINSK, Belarus, April 23 (UPI) -- Kurmanbek Bakiyev said Friday his resignation as president of Kyrgyzstan is not official because he was coerced into giving it.

At a news conference in Minsk, Belarus, Bakiyev said the interim government had also not taken the official steps needed to oust him, the RIA Novosti news agency reported.

"The parliament was to consider my resignation, but this has not been done," he said. "When I was writing the resignation letter, there was a threat from those who seized power in the military takeover."

While Bakiyev suggested he is still the president, he said he does not plan to return to the country or to form a government in exile. He said he will appeal to the United Nations and other international groups, asking other countries "to support the Kyrgyz people."

Bakiyev left Kyrgyzstan last week. He was effectively pushed out of office earlier in the month when he fled the capital, Bishkek.

Prime Minister Roza Otunbayeva, who heads the interim government, said last week Bakiyev had resigned. At the time, Bakiyev's brother accused her of producing a forgery.


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