13:57 17.08.2019

Kyrgyz Interior Ministry says found money to finance riots at house of Atambayev's relative

2 min read
Kyrgyz Interior Ministry says found money to finance riots at house of Atambayev's relative

Employees of the Kyrgyz Interior Ministry found money intended for the financing of the mass riots on August 7-8 at the house of a relative of former Kyrgyz president Almazbek Atambayev, the press service for the ministry told Interfax.

Notes proving that the money was spent on organizing the riots were also found, the press service said.

"In the early hours of August 9, a search was conducted at the house of the father-in-law of [Almazbek Atambayev's son] Seyitbek Atambayev as part of the pre-trial inquiry into the events of August 7-8, a considerable amount of money and the list of general expenses were found following the search. According to tentative information, the aforementioned money was spent on supporting and financing participants in the rallies and mass riots," the Interior Ministry said.

A bag Seyitbek Atambayev left in his father-in-law's house for safekeeping was seized during the search, it said. "The aforementioned bag contained 170,000 som ($2,400), the lists with people's names, the names of populated localities, and phone numbers and the notebooks with general expenses totaling 2.2 million som ($31,000) and $318,00 were also found," it said.

Special operations forces of Kyrgyzstan's State Committee for National Security (GKNB) attempted to detain Atambayev in the village of Koi-Tash 20 kilometers from the country's capital of Bishkek on August 7, leading to clashes with the ex-president's supporters. One special forces soldier died of a gunshot wound. Six special forces soldiers were taken hostage and released the next day.

Clashes continued on August 8 when special forces undertook another attempt to detain the former president. The same day, Atambayev turned himself in to law enforcement agencies.

Police had to use riot control equipment to disperse around 1,500 supporters of Atambayev who gathered on Bishkek's central square late on August 8. More than 40 offenders were detained in Bishkek that night, and four people were hospitalized.

A total of 170 people, including 79 law enforcement officers, were injured over two days of protests in Koi-Tash and Bishkek.

The court sanctioned Atambayev's arrest and placement at the GKNB pre-trial detention facility until August 26; he is suspected of several grave crimes, including organizing mass riots and an attempted murder. His property was seized.

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