- Title: Kyrgyzstan votes in constitutional referendum
- Date: 11th December 2016
- Summary: BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN (DECEMBER 10, 2016) (REUTERS) CARS IN STREET PEOPLE IN STREET BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN (DECEMBER 11, 2016) (REUTERS) (SOUNDBITE) (Kyrgyz) BISHKEK RESIDENT, KAIRAT, SAYING: "Everyone has some expectations. So I want changes for the better in our life. So I voted for (the constitutional changes)." BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN (DECEMBER 10, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF PEOPLE IN STREET
- Embargoed: 26th December 2016 12:59
- Keywords: Kyrgyzstan referendum voting constitution Atambayev
- Location: BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN
- City: BISHKEK, KYRGYZSTAN
- Country: Kyrgyzstan
- Reuters ID: LVA0075CFUSSN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: The people of Kyrgyzstan voted on Sunday (December 11) on amendments to the constitution after a parliament decision to hold a referendum.
The vote on constitutional change would strengthen the powers of the prime minister, a move opponents say is aimed at getting President Almazbek Atambayev into the post when his term ends.
The Central Asian nation's constitution bars Atambayev from running for a second term when his mandate ends in 2017.
The former Soviet republic's parliament passed a bill setting the referendum which will need to be passed in two more readings to become law.
Atambayev's Social Democratic party leads the ruling coalition in parliament. The country's leader said he plans to concentrate on the party work in future.
"I will take part in the work of the Social Democratic party, I want to prepare it - the list and the party - to the parliamentary election in 2020," he told media after casting his ballot.
The proposed constitutional amendments include provisions granting more powers to the cabinet and to leaders of parliamentary factions.
Kyrgyzstan, an impoverished, mostly Muslim nation of 6 million, has been volatile in recent years. Violent protests in 2005 and 2010 toppled successive presidents.
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