Kazakh tycoons would be ruling Kyrgyzstan if Babanov came to power – Atambayev
If Omurbek Babanov came to power, Kazakh tycoons like Utemuratov would be ruling Kyrgyzstan, KyrTAG reports with a reference to the statement of Almazbek Atambayev, President of Kyrgyzstan.
“Frankly speaking I did not know who would be new President of Kyrgyzstan until October 15. Thanks God, it is not Omurbek Babanov! If he came to power, factually he would not be ruling the state, but the Utemuratov tycoons would do(Kazakhstani billionaire Bulat Utemuratov-KazTAG),” he said at the press-conference on Monday.
“Under this system none of the President can be a dragon. Also Zheenbekov (Sooronbay Zheenbekov- President elect in Kyrgyzstan) is not in the age for changing. I’ve known him for more than 20 years. He has never betrayed people, he has always been fair. If Zheenbekov plans to change his views, it will be for his loss. The system is different, people are different and he knows about it,” he said.
As for the criminal case in respect of O.Babanov he said he feels sorry about him.
“If he had been going straight, he would have different future. Nobody asked him to go on a protest action, to say the words stirring up interethnic conflicts. Nobody asked him to turn to a president of another state,” he said.
As it was reported, O. Babanov, leader of Republican-Ata Zhurt party took the second place in the number of votes in the presidential race. A criminal case has been opened in his respect for incitement of international hatred. He is now outside the borders of Kyrgyzstan.
Relations with Kazakhstan did not worsen a little bit, Kazakhstan blockaded us, said President of Kyrgyzstan Almazbek Atambayev speaking at his final press conference on Monday.
“There is a saying “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” The situation on the border makes us only stronger. I think I gave a good lesson for future so that no one would meddle in our domestic affairs and the 2020 parliament elections and any other elections. I don’t think that Kazakhstan has only pluses in this situation and we got only minuses. I would rather say, in the opposite way we will only become stronger, and everything could happen in Kazakhstan, everything is possible,” he said.
Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambaev has signed a law cancelling an agreement under which Bishkek would have received $100 million in aid from Kazakhstan to bring its customs and border-crossing infrastructure up to the standards of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU).
Kyrgyzstan’s presidential website said on November 16 that the Foreign Ministry had been ordered to inform Kazakhstan’s government about the new law.
Kyrgyzstan joined the EEU in August 2015. The Russian-led trade bloc also includes Kazakhstan, Belarus, and Armenia.
Kazakhstan agreed in December 2016 to provide the $100 million aid package to Kyrgyzstan with the first disbursement to be released by the end of 2017. So far, Kazakhstan has not released any of the promised aid to Bishkek.
Relations between the Central Asian countries have deteriorated in recent months with outgoing President Atambaev accusing Kazakhstan of interfering in the campaign for Kyrgyzstan’s October 15 presidential election.
On October 7, Atambaev said Kazakh authorities were “meddling in Kyrgyzstan’s domestic affairs” by supporting opposition candidate Omurbek Babanov, the chief rival of Atambaev political ally Sooronbai Jeenbekov.
Based on reporting by KazTAG, RFE/RL, AKIpress