Kyrgyz opposition leaders planned to hold a rally Thursday to demand the removal of President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, saying his promise to let parliament form a new Cabinet wasn't sufficient.
The opposition wants Bakiyev to fire top officials accused of corruption and other abuses, opposition lawmaker Melis Eshimkhanov said Wednesday.
"As most of our demands have not been agreed upon, we still want Bakiyev to resign," he said, adding the opposition would hold rally Thursday in the capital, Bishkek.
The opposition has been urging Bakiyev to fulfill his election promises and conduct constitutional reforms to curtail presidential powers and give parliament and the Cabinet broader authority.
Eshimkhanov said Bakiyev had promised opposition leaders during their talks Tuesday to immediately dissolve his Cabinet and allow parliament to form a new one. But he said that the president and parliament should stay in place until 2010.
The president also promised to submit constitutional reforms the opposition had demanded to parliament on Thursday, opposition leaders said. Bakiyev suggested that if constitutional reforms are not adopted shortly, they would be the subject of a December referendum.
"We either adopt the Constitution through the Parliament, or in December people will decide what form of governance they need," Bakiyev said, but he left it unclear whether he would propose the changes opponents want.
Bakiyev's spokesman, Dosaly Esenaliyev, told The Associated Press that the president would address parliament on Thursday and added that a set of constitutional reforms would be submitted soon.
But Esenaliyev also wouldn't say whether Bakiyev would introduce changes to allow lawmakers to immediately form a new Cabinet with broader powers, saying only that "many issues have been resolved" in talks between Bakiyev and the opposition, reports AP.
Bakiyev warned the opposition against violence in Thursday's rally.
"We have enough forces and I will not allow (violence)," Bakiyev said.
Eshimkhanov accused the authorities of deploying elite troops from Bakiyev's support base in the south in preparation for the rally, and planning to provoke violence. "It smells of a regional confrontation," he said.
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