Kyrgyzstan is located in eastern Central Asia
and became an independent country in 1991, when the
Soviet Union disbanded. The policy is characterized by
contradictions between clans in the south-west and the
north country. Tensions between the Kyrgyz and the Uzbek
in the Fergana Valley culminated in
2010 in violence that demanded hundreds of deaths. Later
that year, Kyrgyzstan gained a new democratic
constitution and was able to hold its first free and
fair elections. Livestock management and gold mining are
important industries for the economy.
Brief profiles of Kyrgyzstan, including geography, history, politics, economics as well as common acronyms about this country.
Geography and climate
Kyrgyzstan is a mountainous country in
eastern Central Asia. On the surface it is slightly
smaller than Norrland. The country has a pronounced
inland climate with large temperature differences
Kyrgyzstan is sandwiched between China to the east
and south, Tajikistan to the south, Kazakhstan to the
north and Uzbekistan to the west. The border with
Uzbekistan and Tajikistan is very flexible. Both of
these neighboring countries have enclaves within Kyrgyz
About one third of the land area is higher than 3,000
meters above sea level. To the northeast, the Tien Shan
mountain range runs, while the Pamir Mountains (on
Kyrgyz Barm-i-Dunjah - the roofs of the world) form a
border with Tajikistan in the southwest. Both Tien Shan
and Pamir have peaks that reach over 7,000 meters.
Earthquakes often occur in mountain areas.
In northeastern Kyrgyzstan lies the large brackish
lake Issyk-Kul (also Issikköl) in an old crater
surrounded by high mountain peaks. The lake, whose
greatest depth is about 700 meters, never freezes
because it is heated by water from hot springs.
The Naryn River flows up into the mountains to the
east and continues west into Uzbekistan, where it flows
into the Syr-Darja River. The rivers of Kyrgyzstan often
originate in glaciers and are important for the
irrigation of agriculture. Cultivable areas can only be
found in the Fergana Valley in the west and on the high
plateau around the capital Bishkek in the north.
Summer in Kyrgyzstan is long and hot, while winter is
short and cold. In winter time it can be below 30 minus
degrees in Bishkek. The temperature changes between day
and night can also be large.
In the plains in the north and in the Fergana valley
comes spring early. Western and northwesterly winds
bring precipitation that can be plentiful, up to 1,000
mm annually in the Fergana Valley. In the eastern Tien
Shan mountains on the border with China, however, no
more than 100 mm of precipitation falls annually.
FACTS - GEOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE
198,500 km2 (2018)
Swedish +4 hours
Adjacent country (s)
Kazakhstan, China, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan
Capital with number of inhabitants
Bishkek 1,001,500 (official estimate 2019)
Other major cities
Osj 270 300, Jalalabad 119 100, Karakol 76 500,
Tokmak 64 500 (official estimate 2019)
Jengish Chokusu (in the Tien Shan Mountains) (7,439 m
Average Precipitation / month
Bishkek 800 mm (Nov), 10 mm (June)
Average / day
Bishkek 24 °C (July), –15 °C (Jan)
Mayor is deposed
The disputed Kyrgyz nationalist mayor Melis Myrzakmatov in Osh is dismissed.
The government has previously tried to oust Myrzakmatov, who has ties to
ex-President Bakiev, but has been hampered by his supporters.
Claws after arrest
Thousands of supporters of opposition politician Keldibekov storm the
regional government office in Osh and demand his release (see November 2013).
Many of the protesters are on horseback. Police manage to prevent the crowd from
taking over the building, but a number of police officers are injured.
Oppositionist top politicians are arrested
Leading opposition politician and former President Achmatbek Keldibekov is
arrested on charges of abuse of power and economic irregularities. Keldibekov
claims that the charges are politically motivated. Protesters block a major road
outside the city of Osh demanding that he be released, and in Bishkek a protest
with the same demands is held outside Parliament.
Well-known lawyer is abused
Attorney Ikramiddin Aitkulov - known for defending opposition politicians and
activists - is badly beaten by unknown perpetrators outside his home. He is
taken to hospital unconscious with severe concussion and broken bones. Aitkulov
was a defense lawyer for the three opposition leaders who were sentenced to
prison for coup attempt (see August 2013).
Prosecution for bad mining contract
The prosecutor prosecuted three previous ministers for the mining agreement
concluded with Canadian Centerra Gold in 2003, which gave the state only 17
percent of the Kumtor mine and the company 83 percent. The charges relate to
corruption. The agreement was renegotiated in 2009, when the state gained 33
Political conflict about mining
After further demonstrations demanding the nationalization of the country's
largest gold mine Kumtor (see May 2013), Parliament votes down the government's
proposal for state cooperation with the Canadian mining company Centerra Gold,
where both parties would own 50 percent each. Parliament requires state
ownership of the mine to 67 percent, while the company requires at least 50
percent for its part.
HD refuses free judgment
The Supreme Court cancels the acquittal against the three opposition leaders
accused of coup attempts (see June 2013). They lose their seats in Parliament
and must serve their prison sentences of between one year and 18 months. The
verdict is considered politically motivated by the opposition.
Hard punishment for Islamists
Nine members of an Islamist extremist group are sentenced to long prison
sentences for armed assaults in Bishkek at the end of 2010 and early 2011. Three
men are sentenced to life imprisonment, four each to 23 years and two men to 22
HD looks over liberating judgment against oppositionists
The Supreme Court decides to raise the cases with the three opposition
leaders (see March 2013 and June 2013) for a new trial. The chief prosecutor in
Bishkek has appealed against the acquittal verdict.
Sentenced opposition politicians are freed
The three opposition leaders are acquitted after the appeal by the prison
judges for alleged coup attempt (see March 2013). The three judges who acquit
them go underground. Decides that the US use of the Manas military base should
cease in July 2014. The decision must be signed by President Atambayev in order
to be valid;
Exiled leader is sentenced
Former Prime Minister Danijar Usenov, who fled the country, is sentenced in
his absence to 15 years in prison for corruption during his time as mayor of
Revolt in the south
The protests in the Issyk-Kul region spread to Jalalabad in the south, where
hundreds of people storm the governor's office, appoint a "people's governor"
and demand the release of incarcerated opposition leaders. The "People's
Governor" is being seized by the authorities.
State of emergency after protests
Following violent protests at a gold mine, followed by police action with
tear gas, rubber bullets and shock grenades, President Atambayev announces a
state of emergency in a district in the Issyk-Kul region. At least 55 people are
injured and 80 are arrested by police. The protesters demand that the Canadian
majority-owned mine be nationalized.
Cooperation with the United States is terminated
The government decides to terminate the agreement with the US that NATO has
the right to use Mana's airfields as a transit center for military operations in
Afghanistan. When the NATO troops left Afghanistan in 2014, there should be no
military installations at Manas, according to the government whose decision must
be approved by Parliament. Manas houses approximately 1,000 American soldiers
and several military tankers.
Opposition politicians are imprisoned
The three arrested MPs from Fäderneslandet are sentenced to prison for
leading a violent protest action (see October 2012) with demands for the
nationalization of the Kumtor gold mine. They are charged with attempted coup
and the penalty is between one year and 18 months.
Ex-minister jailed for corruption
Former Minister of Social Affairs Ravshan Sabirov is sentenced to five years
in prison for corruption, and his Deputy Minister is sentenced to three years in
prison. Both are convicted of receiving bribes in connection with the adoption
of Kyrgyz children abroad.
The president is doomed
The downed President Bakijev is sentenced in his absence to 24 years in
prison for abuse of power during his term of office 2005-2010. Bakijev's brother
and former security chief is sentenced to life imprisonment for murder and other
crimes. Two sons of Bakijev also receive long prison sentences.
Hundreds of opposition supporters demonstrate in Jalalabad. They demand a
fair trial for the three arrested opposition leaders (see October 2012).
Strict punishment for bridesmaids
President Atambayev signs a law that raises the maximum penalty for
bridesmaids from three to seven years in prison. If the kidnapped bride is
younger than 17, the minimum age for marriage, the sentence can be up to ten
years in prison.