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Kyrgyzstan: Outgoing President Pledges to Continue Playing Role in Politics

Kyrgyz President Almazbek Atambayev speaking at his final press conference on November 20, 2017 (Photo: Kyrgyzstan presidential administration official photographer).

Kyrgyzstan’s president has in his final press conference before leaving office dangled the prospect that he may run for parliament as the list-topping candidate for the ruling Social Democratic Party, or SDPK.

“I don’t plan to become chairman of parliament or the government, or even a member of parliament, but I will be number one,” Almazbek Atambayev said in his most explicit indication so far that he intends to occupy an important role in Kyrgyz political life. It was not wholly clear from the somewhat contradictory remarks whether he intends or hopes to take up a seat in parliament or not, however.

Atambayev is making history by becoming the first elected president in Kyrgyzstan to step aside for another elected successor, Sooronbai Jeenbekov, who is set to be officially sworn into office on November 24. Jeenbekov won elections in a single round last month by exceeding the required 50 percent vote threshold.

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Kyrgyzstan: Outgoing President Pledges to Continue Playing Role in Politics

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