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New Kyrgyz President Names Ex-Security Chief Acting PM

Kyrgyzstan's new president, Kurmanbek Bakiyev, has named the country's former security chief, Felix Kulov, as acting prime minister, fulfilling a pre-election pact between the two leaders.

Mr. Kulov, who was jailed under the country's ousted Soviet-era government, had planned to run in last month's presidential elections.

But he withdrew from the race when Mr. Bakiyev promised him the top cabinet post under a deal aimed at avoiding a serious rift between northern and southern Kyrgyzstan.

Mr. Bakiyev, who won the July 10 vote, took the oath of office Sunday.

In his inaugural speech, the new president promised to stamp out corruption in the impoverished country, improve its economy and pursue an independent foreign policy.

Mr. Bakiyev had been acting president since March, when street protests forced longtime leader Askar Akayev to flee the country.

(Some information for this report provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.)