Day By Day

Monday, July 11, 2005

Kyrgyzstan Update -- Bakiev Wins Convincingly

BBC reports:
Kyrgyzstan's acting president, Kurmanbek Bakiev, has won a landslide victory in a presidential election.

With almost all the votes counted, Mr Bakiev has 89% support, giving him an insurmountable lead, the election commission said.

He was appointed acting president by opposition groups following the downfall of former leader Askar Akayev, who fled into exile five months ago.

Election officials say the turnout was nearly 75%, much higher than expected.

Read it here.

This is good news. Bakiev's election is a stunning repudiation of the former, pro-Moscow, regime and will vastly complicate efforts on the part of China and Russia to exclude US influence from Central Asia. More importantly, Bakiev is a reformer who has the confidence of the public. With public support and US backing he should be able to accomplish much.

Now, let's see the US step up to the plate.

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