Kyrgyz parliament approves Akayev resignation as president

Kyrgyz parliament approves Akayev resignation as president

[JURIST] The Kyrgyzstan Parliament, meeting for the fourth time on the issue of former President Askar Akayev [archived profile], finally accepted his formal resignation Monday by a majority vote. The parliament had struggled to approve the resignation, as some members wanted to initiate impeachment proceedings or even a criminal trial against Akayev. While some members still view both of those as options, the official acceptance of Akayev's April 4 resignation [JURIST report] lessens the likelihood of either of those events. There is no word on a new date for national elections, which were temporarily postponed [JURIST report] while parliament considered the resignation issue. Interim President Kurmanbek Bakiyev [BBC profile] signed amendments [Itar-Tass report] to the presidential immunities law Monday that strip Akayev and his family of their immunity status and partially remove national privileges. The amendments were passed by the parliament Friday as a reply to members who wish to see Akayev tried for his failure to remain in the country. JURIST's Paper Chase has continuing coverage of Kyrgyzstan [JURIST Country news archive]. Itar-Tass has local coverage.

In related news, opposition leader Felix Kulov [party profile] has been acquitted of the final criminal conviction against him, clearing the way for him to run for president in the upcoming Kyrgyzstan national elections. Kulov had already been cleared of a previous conviction for criminal abuse of power [JURIST report] and the Kyrgyz Supreme Court ruled Monday that Kulov's second conviction on charges of embezzlement were invalid. Novosti has local coverage.

10:40 AM ET – Reports just in say that the Kyrgyz parliament has now rescheduled the postponed national elections for July 10. BBC News has more.