Kyrgyzstan requests extradition of ex-president from Belarus

The FINANCIAL -- BISHKEK. Kyrgyzstan's prosecutor general formally asked Belarus on May 6 to extradite ousted Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, a deputy prime minister in the interim government said, according to RIA Novosti

Bakiyev took refuge in Belarus after fleeing Kyrgyzstan last month. The interim authorities, who took power amid violent unrest in early April, accuse the ousted president of involvement in the shooting of civilians during the riots in Bishkek.

"On May 6, the Kyrgyz Prosecutor General's Office sent a request for the extradition of Bakiyev to the prosecutor general of Belarus," Kyrgyz Deputy Prime Minister Azimbek Nazarov told journalists.

More than 80 people died in clashes between opposition protesters and security forces in Bishkek on April 7 and 8, while 1,500 were injured.

The interim government says the shooting of civilians took place with the knowledge and consent of Bakiyev. A Cabinet decree issued on Tuesday stated that security forces under the control of the then-president, including snipers, fired at members of the public.

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, who invited Bakiyev to take refuge in Minsk and criticized his ouster, said a few days ago that he did not intend to hand the former president over to the new authorities in Kyrgyzstan.


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