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Page last updated at 17:25 GMT, Monday, 27 July 2009 18:25 UK

Kyrgyz head officially re-elected

Kyrgyz opposition leader Almazbek Atambayev (C) speaks at a rally in Bishkek on 23 July 2009
The opposition says the vote was illegitimate

Election officials in Kyrgyzstan have announced that incumbent president Kurmanbek Bakiyev has officially won last week's controversial poll.

Mr Bakiyev was re-elected with 76% of the vote, the election commission said.

The main opposition candidate, Almazbek Atambayev, secured just 8%. He declared the poll "illegitimate" and has called for protests later this week.

European monitors have described last Thursday's poll as a "disappointment", saying it failed to meet key standards.

Opposition anger

Mr Bakiyev - who came to power four years ago off the back of a popular uprising which became known as the Tulip Revolution - had pledged to conduct free and fair elections.

But his political opponents claim their supporters have been threatened.

Mr Atambayev said he had sent his wife and daughter away from the country after being intimidated.

He has now flown to Moscow seeking support - although Russia has traditionally backed President Bakiyev.

During the vote, clashes between opposition members and government forces were reported in the northern town of Balykchi.



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