BISHKEK. A jailed prominent politician, former vice-president and leader of the Arnamys (Dignity) Party, Feliks Kulov has criticized the authorities for organizing an ineffective referendum. According to the head of Arnamys party’s headquarters, Emil Aliev, the leader of the party, Kulov said that the corrupt court system and administration will be maintained after the referendum. Kulov called the referendum ‘political gambling’ and said it would result in the strengthening President Askar Akayev’s powers and the elimination of Akayev’s political enemies.
The former vice president is currently serving a jail term.
The Bishkek City Court upheld on 11 October, 2002, the ruling against former Vice President of Kyrgyzstan Feliks Kulov, cutting only one third of the Kulov's term in accordance with the law on amnesty.
A district court of Bishkek sentenced Kulov on May 8, 2002, to 10 years of imprisonment, convicting him of embezzlement in 1993-1997, when he was governor of the Chui Province. Kulov was already serving time in jail, having been convicted on a different charge. The Bishkek City military court sentenced him on 22 January 2001 to seven years of imprisonment, convicting him of abuse of power when he was the Minister of National Security in 1997-1998. Opposition and human rights activists say the trials were politically motivated.