Protesters seized the White House building and freed ex-politicians from prison. On October 6, CEC of Kyrgyzstan recognised the results of election as null and void.
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Protests in Bishkek started in the morning of October 5. Representatives of political parties went out to protest to Ala-Too square and to the building of the opera and ballet theatre. They all voiced disagreement with the results of the election and called for re-election.
Closer to 3 p.m. protesters from various parts of the town gathered at the central square. Citizens joined them as the protest went by. According to various estimates, there were around five thousand people at the protest action. Police officers, police wagons, and ambulance cars started to gather there.
Despite calls not to succumb to provocations and to continue the peaceful protest, in the evening events began to develop rapidly and escalated into clashes. Some of the protesters broke through the police cordon and tried to storm the gates of the parliament building.
In response, law enforcement officers began dispersing the protesters with water cannons, stun grenades, rubber bullets and tear gas. People were pushed back from the square, the police tried to block the streets, but clashes continued until late at night. Meanwhile, wireless communications and the internet were halted in town.
Concurrently, social media held campaigns to raise money for food and tea for the protesters. City dwellers living in the city centre were urged to remove their Wi-Fi passwords so that people on the streets could have access to internet. Bottles with tap water were left for protesters on the streets.
Photo: Арген Бактыбек уулу
Clashes with the police occurred in different parts of the city. In the centre of Bishkek, the protesters burned a patrol car. Protesters attacked ambulance cars and crashed them, an ambulance attendant was hit in the head with a rock.
According to Ministry of Health, as of morning of October 6, 590 persons were injured. 150 persons were hospitalised with various injuries, 13 of them were in intensive care unit. One injured has died.
Closer to midnight, some protesters seized a fire engine and headed to the White House. People were gathering there and the clashes moved again to the central square.
Around 3 a.m. of October 6, it became known that the protesters broke into the parliament building and seized it.
Afterwards, the protesters headed towards the State Committee for National Security (GKNB). They smashed the door of the agency and then officers of the agency came out with their hands up and said they were with people.
The protesters freed ex-president Almazbek Atambaev from the pre-trial detention centre of GKNB. Later on, it was reported that ex-prime minister Sapar Isakov and ex-deputies Sadyr Zhaparov and Ravshan Zheenbekov were freed from colonies as well. Ex-mayor of Bishkek Albek Ibraimov was freed in the afternoon of October 6.
In the morning of October 6, the protesters continued to seize administrative buildings and appoint acting officials. Prosecutor general, head of the State Penitentiary Service, ministers of health and finance ministries were replaced. Governmental plenipotentiary envoys in the regions, as well as mayors of Bishkek and Osh resigned one after another.
Meanwhile, volunteers took out to streets to help clean the city and feed the protesters. Tents distributing hot tea and food were set up at the square.
In the afternoon, people carried out a clean-up event to help municipal services clean the city. As the mayor’s press service said in the evening, employees of Tazalyk together with volunteers gathered 20 tonnes of litter in Bishkek.
Protesters are still at the central square, and some people gathered at Hotel Dostuk, where in the afternoon of October 6 parliamentarians held a special session. According to the media outlets, nearly 35 parliamentarians attended it, which is below the quorum needed.
The gates of the White House are broken down and people come into the yard unhindered.
Members of vigilante groups stand at the entrance to the parliament and do not let anyone in to avoid looting and thefts.
At the same time, the supporters of ex-president Almazbek Atambaev gathered near the Forum building. Freed ex-mayor of Bishkek Albek Ibraimov and ex-prime minister Sapar Isakov spoke in front of the participants, but Atambaev did not show up.
Unlike the 2005 and 2010 events, this time protests were not accompanied by mass looting. Only pavement was damaged in the city as protesters were using it to throw at police officers; promotional banners and some infrastructure facilities were damaged.
Burned cars, including patrol ones that were burned the day before littered the city centre.
Meanwhile, protests were held in other towns of the country. Politicians and activists call for legitimate actions in social media.
In the evening, vigilante groups were formed. Volunteers near the Sports Palace were divided into groups to patrol Bishkek at night and to ensure safety.