Friday, May 06, 2005
New report on Kyrgyzstan
The March 2005 popular revolt ended President Askar Akaev's increasingly authoritarian fourteen-year rule and gave political and economic progress a chance. However, the new leaders face significant obstacles. If the situation is mishandled, and people conclude nothing has changed except the names at the top, Kyrgyzstan could become seriously unstable.
As they prepare for presidential elections in July 2005, Kyrgyzstan's new leaders face critical challenges that risk undermining the country's important step toward real democracy:
the need for political reform, particularly to redress imbalances created by Akaev's centralisation of power in the presidency and the weakness of state institutions;
a looming economic crisis that could be worsened by tax collection problems and weak administration;
a crisis over land seizures, squatters and enduring problems with land tenure;
and the growing security risk from criminal groups with economic and political power.
The full report can be downloaded in PDF format.