BISHKEK. The military court today continued the hearing against the former officials allegedly involved in the Aksy shootings in March 17-18, 2002. Some members of the special police detachment testified before the court as witnesses. One of them, policeman Asan Ergeshov said that some women protesters encouraged the male demonstrators against police. The policemen admitted that there were no guns in the crowd, but they stressed that the protesters became more aggressive before the tragedy occurred. Policeman Nurbek Orozaliev added that nobody from their officials did order them to open fire against protesters.
Begaly Chetimbaev, 31, Kadyrkul Saparaliev, 37, Sovetbek Tagaev, 24, and Satymbek Urkumbaev, 44, were shot dead on 17 March and Eldar Umetaliev, 23, was killed on 18 March during their protest action. They were among the supporters of the MP, Azimbek Beknazarov, then jailed by authorities. Opposition regarded his detention as politically motivated, because he was arguing against the Government's agreement with China on the border issues. Opposition says that the 'big fishs' involved in the tragedy, are not being held in responsibility for the shooting. President A.Akayev yesterday said during his TV session that the Maily-Suu court hearing is to define a just verdict on the issue.