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Kyrgyz ex-president says ready to resist any attempt to arrest him

Atambayev, 62, served as Kyrgyzstan’s president in 2011-2017

BISHKEK, June 28. /TASS/. Kyrgyzstan’s ex-president Almazbek Atambayev said he would resist any attempt to arrest him, commenting on the parliament’s decision to strip him of immunity on Thursday.

"Law enforcement officers had informed me about my arrest being prepared. I’m ready to anything and I will resist," he said, adding that he had some "weapons of honor" presented to him as a reward.

The former president said many officers have voiced support for him, but many others are ready to follow orders, even illegitimate ones.

"I will be alone during the detention, none [of supporters] will stand by my side," he said, describing the charges against him as "nonsense and rubbish."

On Thursday, Kyrgyz MPs decided by majority vote to strip ex-president Atambayev of his immunity. After this decision, Atambayev can be held accountable in connection with several criminal cases against him.

Atambayev, 62, served as Kyrgyzstan’s president in 2011-2017 and was the country’s only leader to leave office after his first term expired. The first and second presidents of the Central Asian republic, Askar Akayev and Kurmanbek Bakiyev, were toppled after revolutions.

The former president is suspected of corruption during the reconstruction of Bishkek’s thermal power station and illegal supplies of coal for it, the unlawful allocation of land and helping release crime lord Aziz Batukayev as well as obtaining a plot of land for building a residential house.

The ex-Kyrgyz president earlier said he was not planning to attend the questioning, dismissing the investigation as political prosecution against him initiated by the current authorities.