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Kyrgyz Lawmakers Agree to Avert Constitutional Crisis

Opposition and pro-government lawmakers in Kyrgyzstan say they have reached a compromise deal to avert the ongoing constitutional crisis.

The standoff has triggered several days of violent demonstrations in Bishkek by lawmakers with police firing tear gas and smoke bombs to disperse them.

After talks in parliament Tuesday, the two sides said that they have agreed on a new draft constitution that would significantly reduce President Kurmanbek Bakiyev's powers. The full parliament is scheduled to vote on the draft on Wednesday.

Mr. Bakiyev has not responded yet and it is not clear if he will recognize the new constitution that emerges from the compromise deal. But it will have legal force, if it is approved by two thirds of parliament.

Earlier, Mr. Bakiyev threatened to dissolve parliament if the opposition continues to try to unseat him. He came to power during an uprising in March 2005, on a platform of reform. The opposition says he has not delivered on his promise.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.