BISHKEK. The Kyrgyz Constitutional Court today continued hearings on the ratification of the Kyrgyz-Chinese border agreements. The Kyrgyz opposition said that the ratification was illegal because there were shortcomings in the constitutional procedures of this move. Eleven opposition deputies of the Legislative Assembly (lower chamber) of Kyrgyz parliament appealed to the Constitutional Court last May, asking it to define whether or not the constitution was abused when parliament ratified the 1996 and 1999 agreements between China and Kyrgyzstan over their disputed border areas.
Lawmakers Ismail Isakov and Azimbek Beknazarov told the court today that about two-thirds of parliament members had to vote for the agreement. However, the votes were not enough. That is why the ratification is illegal, the lawmakers said. Opponents of the plaintiffs, the speaker of the Legislative Assembly, Abdygany Erkebaev, and lawmaker Zainidin Kurmanov told the court that there were no legal shortcomings in the ratification of the border agreements.
The Constitutional Court is expected to issue a verdict on the case this week. Meanwhile, about 150 residents of the southern town of Kyzyljar near the town of Tashkoemur held a protest meeting today, demanding the constitutional court to issue a just verdict. The protesters asked the authorities to stop the harassment of opposition lawmakers and plaintiffs of the case, and urged Bishkek to bring to justice those who vandalized Isakov's house last week.