Kyrgyzstan’s former president Almazbek Atambayev has been detained by law enforcement officers after allegedly threatening to overthrow his successor.
Mr Atambayev was held on Thursday after his residence in Koy-Tash, a village about 20km south of the capital Bishkek, was raided for the second time in 24 hours, according to news agencies.
Mr Atambayev’s supporters said he had decided to give himself up, Interfax reported.
The current Kyrgyzstan president Sooronbai Jeenbekov ordered the first raid on Mr Atambayev’s residence on Wednesday night. Mr Atambayev’s supporters repelled the forces, injuring dozens, killing one and taking several soldiers hostage who were later released.
Mr Atambayev responded on Thursday by calling on his supporters to rally in central Bishkek, and stating that he aimed to oust the president.
Shortly afterwards a special services vehicle rammed through the gates of Mr Atambayev’s Koy-Tash residence. The Ministry of Internal Affairs brought in special vehicles and used water cannons to force Mr Atambayev’s supporters out, news agencies reported.
不久后，一辆特种车撞倒了阿坦巴耶夫在科伊-塔什村宅邸的大门。据各通讯社报道，内务部(Ministry of Internal Affairs)出动了特种车辆，并使用水炮驱赶阿坦巴耶夫的支持者。
Mr Atambayev held the top job for six years until late 2017 with Mr Jeenbekov as his prime minister in the last years of his term, but was stripped of the title of ex-president and his immunity from prosecution in late June.
He has been accused of corruption but previously refused to be questioned and called the accusations against him “absurd”.
Some experts and politicians called Thursday’s stand-off a clash of clans, but Mr Jeenbekov said it was solely an attempt to fight lawlessness.
“This is not a showdown between two people,” the president said at an emergency parliamentary session on Thursday. “It is a blatant fight against revealing criminal activity that crowns corruption in the country, against lawful investigation and justice. It is a fight between the law and wilfulness, putting personal interests above state interests.”
Tobias Vollmer, a senior analyst at the London-based political risk consultancy Prism, said the stand-off was a combination of a power struggle, a consolidation of power by Mr Jeenbekov and an attempt to bring the former president to justice.
Kyrgyzstan has experienced two revolutions in the past 14 years, both of which ousted presidents. Mr Vollmer said that while “a violent civic conflict is not unlikely”, a third revolution was “improbable”.
“While most people are wary of violence in the country, there is still a potential for a stand-off between Mr Atambayev supporters and the security forces,” said Mr Vollmer.
The president sees Mr Atambayev as a threat to his authority and may want to settle a personal score, he said. “After all, Atambayev had underestimated his protégé and thought he could use him as a puppet.”
Mr Atambayev, a representative of Kyrgyzstan’s northern clans, enjoys broad support, especially in the capital and other northern regions, said Mr Vollmer. But he has also made enemies, especially among the leaders of the 2010 revolution that effectively brought him to power.
Moscow-educated with a pro-Russia reputation during his presidency, Mr Atambayev visited Moscow after his ouster but failed to secure the support of Russian president Vladimir Putin, who said Kyrgyzstan has had enough political shocks and “everyone should unite around the sitting president”.
Chris Weafer, a Moscow-based analyst at Macro Advisory, said he expected the situation to remain contained until next year’s presidential elections. “The ruling SDPK party, of which Mr Atambayev is leader, is now fracturing with many of the former president’s supporters defecting to opposition parties,” he said. “The next election is set for 2020 and that may be when the political tensions boil over.”
Macro Advisory常驻莫斯科的分析员克里斯•威弗(Chris Weafer)表示，他预计局势在明年总统选举之前将保持可控。“阿坦巴耶夫领导的执政的社会民主党(SDPK)已经分裂，前总统的许多支持者已投奔反对党，”他表示。“下一次选举定于2020年举行，那可能是政治紧张沸腾的时候。”