Mongolia bars ex-president from parliamentary elections

Updated: 2012-06-08 17:27


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ULAN BATOR - Mongolia's electoral authority has barred former President Nambaryn Enkhbayar from participating in the June 28 parliamentary elections as he is facing corruption charges, local media reported Friday.

Mongolia's General Election Commission (GEC) voted against the candidacy of Enkhbayar based on "the candidate's knowledge, education, experience, skills, patriotism and his ethical conduct," the commission said in a statement on Thursday.

It also rejected his son Batshugar Enkhbayar's bid to contest in the  elections on the ground that he has never served in the military, which is compulsory according to electoral law, the statement said.

The opposition Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (MPRP), which the older Enkhbayar leads, vowed to challenge the ruling at the constitutional court, the European Union and the United Nations, saying the ruling was illegal since he has yet to be convicted on charges of graft and abuse of power.

"The decision of the GEC is illegal. No trial of Enkhbayar, chairman of MPRP, was held and he was not convicted. Based on this, refusal to register Enkhbayar is a clear violation of law," the opposition party said in a statement.

Enkhbayar was arrested in April on charges of being involved in the illegal privatization of a hotel and a publishing house and of using TV equipment donated to a Mongolian Buddhist organization to establish his own television station.

However, supporters said Enkhbayar, who served as president of the country from 2005 to 2009, was framed by incumbent President Tsakhia Elbegdorj for political reasons. Enkhbayar's trial is expected to be held on Tuesday.

Enkhbayar lost to Elbegdorj by a small margin in 2009 presidential elections. Enkhbayar first conceded but later rejected the election results, claiming irregularities.