* U.S. says Maxim Bakiyev may face long term in jail
* Hardline Belarus leader shelters his father and uncle
* Resource-rich but poor, Kyrgyzstan is highly volatile
By Dmitry Solovyov
ALMATY, Oct 13 The United States said on
Saturday it had asked Britain to extradite the arrested son of
Kyrgyzstan's fugitive ex-president on fraud charges.
The Kyrgyz president's office said Maxim Bakiyev, son of the
country's former president Kurmanbek Bakiyev, had been arrested
in London on Friday at the request of Kyrgyzstan and the United
British police said the 34-year-old Bakiyev had been
arrested by extradition officers on the request of U.S.
authorities, who want to question him for alleged involvement in
fraud. He had voluntarily visited a police station in central
London by appointment.
"The United States has requested the extradition of Mr.
Bakiyev from the United Kingdom to face trial in U.S. federal
court on serious charges of conspiracy to commit securities
fraud and obstruction of justice," the U.S. embassy in the
Kyrgyz capital Bishkek said in a statement
"If convicted, Mr. Bakiyev could face a lengthy prison
Ex-president Bakiyev was given shelter by Belarus after
crowds of protesters seized his government headquarters in an
April 2010 revolt in which about 90 people were killed when
security forces opened fire on opposition supporters.
Belarus, run by authoritarian President Alexander
Lukashenko, has repeatedly rejected Kyrgyzstan's requests to
extradite the former president, who is accused at home of "mass
killings" of protesters during the coup.
Maxim Bakiyev, who under his father headed an investment
agency, has been accused by the country's new authorities of
involvement in large-scale frauds which stripped the
impoverished ex-Soviet nation's coffers of millions of dollars.
Kyrgyzstan's ties with Belarus have soured in recent months
after Minsk also declined to extradite the ex-president's
younger brother Zhanybek, who headed his personal security guard
and is also accused of committing mass killings.
Two presidents, including Bakiyev, have been toppled in
Kyrgyzstan since 2005. Some 500 people were killed in
interethnic violence in June 2010.
(Reporting and writing by Dmitry Solovyov)