Ousted Kyrgyz leader in Belarus

April 20, 2010 at 1:10 PM

MINSK, Belarus, April 20 (UPI) -- Kyrgyzstan's ousted leader Kurmanbek Bakiyev is in Belarus, that country's President Alexander Lukashenko said Tuesday.

Lukashenko told the Belarussian parliament Bakiyev and four members of his family were his guests since Monday.

"He is with us under the defense of our state and president," Lukashenko was quoted as saying by BBC News. "He is the president of a state with which we are friendly."

The news ends the uncertainty of Bakiyev's whereabouts after the leader fled Kyrgyzstan via Kazkahstan. He was ousted after fighting between police and opposition demonstrators on April 7.

The country's interim leader, Roza Otunbayeva, wants Bakiyev to stand trial because of the bloody fighting. More than 80 people died in the unrest.

Bakiyev had said he was ready to resign if the opposition guarantees his and his family's safety, an offer turned down by the interim government.

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