By Olga Dzyubenko
BISHKEK – Kyrgyz President Kurmanbek Bakiyev said on Thursday U.S. servicemen and women stationed in his Central Asian state should no longer enjoy immunity from prosecution after the fatal shooting of a truck driver.
Alexander Ivanov, a 42-year-old ethnic Russian who worked as a fuel truck driver, was shot and killed on Wednesday by an unidentified U.S. Air Force airman at a checkpoint leading to a U.S. airbase in the country’s main civilian airport.
“It would be appropriate for military based in Kyrgyzstan to bear responsibility for any illegal acts they carry out, in accordance with Kyrgyzstan’s laws,” Bakiyev told U.S. ambassador Marie Yovanovitch, according to a statement from his office.
Ivanov, a father of two, had no criminal record, Kyrgyz government officials said. He was killed by two pistol shots to the chest, police said.
Troops at the base, set up in 2001 to support operations in nearby Afghanistan, enjoy a similar status to diplomats and cannot be prosecuted by Kyrgyz courts under an agreement between the two countries.
US begins closing Kyrgyz base: here.