Politics, Asia - Pacific

Observers say Kyrgyzstan polls 'fair, credible' as opposition cries foul

Preliminary results of Sunday's parliamentary elections have sparked claims of rigging, calls for recount

Nazir Aliyev Tayfur   | 29.11.2021
Observers say Kyrgyzstan polls 'fair, credible' as opposition cries foul

BISHKEK, Kyrgyzstan

Various international observers have said Sunday’s parliamentary elections in Kyrgyzstan were fair and transparent, refuting allegations of irregularities leveled by several opposition parties.

Observers from the Parliamentary Assembly of Turkic‑speaking Countries (TURKPA), Organization of Turkic States, Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) did not report any flaws in the process.

Over 1,000 candidates from 21 political parties and nearly 300 independents were in the running for 90 seats in Kyrgyzstan’s unicameral parliament, with parties required to pass a 5% threshold to enter the legislature.

Preliminary results show 54 candidates from six parties have been successful so far, prompting outcry from several groups.

At least four parties – Ata Meken, Azattyk, Uluttar Birimdigi, and Social Democrats – have cried foul over the results, accusing authorities of rigging the vote and demanding a recount.

Recep Seker, a legislator from Turkey’s Justice and Development (AK) Party who led the TURKPA mission, said the elections were up to international standards and held in accordance with Kyrgyzstan’s laws.

Gismat Gozalov, head of the Organization of Turkic States’ observer group, said the polls were fair and democratic, while the SCO termed them transparent and credible.

Yerik Ashimov, leader of the SCO mission, said no irregularities had been recorded that could put into question the legitimacy of the vote.

OIC mission chief Adamo Baubokar hailed Kyrgyzstan’s use of technology in the vote and asserted that the OIC was satisfied with the entire process.

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