April 01, 2014 13:59
Restrictions on holding rallies in Bishkek contradict Kyrgyz Constitution - human rights activists
BISHKEK. April 1 (Interfax) - The Kyrgyz opposition and human rights activists condemned the ban on holding rallies on Bishkek's central square and near the parliament and government buildings until May 31, statements of the Kyrgyz National Opposition Movement and the Kalym Shamy human rights center obtained by Interfax said.
This decision contradicts the country's constitution, the documents said.
"Such decisions violating human rights have been made by Presidents Akayev and Bakiyev. But these decisions, made in an attempt to create conditions to enhance the authoritarian authorities, could not save their power from a people's disturbance," the National Opposition Movement said in the statement.
The opposition said it urged Kyrgyz citizens "to actively resist the actions of the authorities limiting human rights in the country."
The decision to temporarily ban rallies in central Bishkek violates the law on peaceful gatherings, when restrictions are introduced only amid a real threat to the security of those participating in the gathering and other citizens at named sites, the Kalym Shamy human rights center said.
Human rights activists said they urged the Kyrgyz prosecutor's office to investigate the existence of abuse of power by Bishkek's Pervomaysky district administration and ombudsman and the committee on human rights, constitutional law and state establishment to respond to violations of the law on peaceful gatherings.
Bishkek's Pervomaysky district administration has introduced temporary restrictions on holding protest rallies on Bishkek's central square and near the parliament and government buildings from March 31 to May 1.
The administration's decision was made ahead of a large-scale rally of an opposition movement prepared for March 31.
Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev considers "the decision of the Pervomaysky district court on temporary rally restrictions to be understandable and that it reflects the opinion of most Bishkek residents," Atambayev's spokesman Kadyr Toktogulov said.
"In the president's opinion, Bishkek Mayor Kubanychbek Kulmatov needs to search for a better solution of the problem," the spokesman said.
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