Preliminary results: Jeenbekov scores 54.22 percent votes in Kyrgyzstan presidential election

Preliminary results: Jeenbekov scores 54.22 percent votes in Kyrgyzstan presidential election

The election may result in the former Soviet republic's first peaceful transition of presidential power.

Polls ahead of the election had been predicting no overall victor, but Kyrgyzstan looks to have chosen its next president.

With results from 98 percent of the polling stations counted, the Central Election Commission on Monday put turnout at just under 56 percent.

On the second place Omurbek Babanov with the result of 33.47 percent, on the third - Adakhan Madumarov, who gained 6.4 percent.

Atambayev - likely to remain a powerful figure if his preferred candidate Jeenbekov does win - warned on Sunday he would use any violence as an opportunity to "cleanse" the country. Deputy chairman Konstantin Petrov announced that the OSK will not observe the election following "unprecedented statements by the president of Kyrgyzstan about Kazakhstan".

Atambaev is constitutionally barred from seeking a second term and has publicly supported Jeenbekov, who stepped down as prime minister in August to run for president. The first two of the country's President resigned because of dissatisfaction of people.

While Atambayev was able to strengthen some executive powers a year ago, he refrained from trying to hold onto power and instead backed Jeenbekov, a close ally and experienced bureaucrat.

Babanov, also a former prime minister, has accused the government of abusing its powers to ensure Jeenbekov's victory after the authorities charged some of his campaign supporters with plotting a coup and planning to bribe voters.

The election campaign, marked by mutual accusations between the two main candidates, was seen as a struggle between the bureaucracy, personified by 58-year-old Jeenbekov, and the business sector, represented by the 47-year-old Babanov.

Both leaders and their parties have clashed repeatedly in recent months. President Atambayev, a social democrat, in turn accused Babanov of receiving the backing of the government in neighboring Kazakhstan.



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