Mongolian government dismissed by parliament

Updated: 2007-11-08 21:01

ULAN BATOR -- Mongolia's government was dissolved Thursday morning after the country's parliament, the State Great Hural, accepted the resignation of Prime Minister Miyegombo Enkhbold.

This is Mongolia's second government resignation since the country's parliamentary elections in 2004, when a coalition government was created between the Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party (MPRP) and the second-largest Democratic Party.

In January 2006, parliament adopted the MPRP's motion to dissolve the government headed by democrat Prime Minister Tsakhiagiin Elbegdorj. Enkhbold, the then chairman of the MPRP and Ulan Bator Mayor, was elected as the new prime minister after his party formed a new coalition government with other small parties.

Upon taking office Enkhbold promised in parliament that his government would focus on speeding up the country's economic development. But Enkhbold's leadership has come under fire from some new emerging party peers, who demanded more intra-party democracy and the establishment of a new leadership system in the MPRP.

On October 27, without support from new wings of the MPRP, Enkhbold was defeated in an election for party chairman by Sanj Bayar at the 25th Party Congress. Enkhbold submitted the resignation to parliament Monday after the MPRP's congress said the party's chairman should serve as the prime minister.

Mongolian media said that the 25th MPRP Party Congress modified the party constitution and decreed on intra-party organization and democratic decision-making, and agreed to carry out an anti-corruption campaign in the party, which granted the demand for reform and safeguarded solidarity within the party.

The MPRP holds 39 seats in the 76-seat parliament. Bayar is widely seen as the most likely prime ministerial candidate, and said that he had talked with Mongolian President Nambaryn Enkhbayar and will negotiate with the parties in parliament to form a new government as soon as possible.

The opposition Democratic Party currently holds 22 seats in parliament. The party is rushing to win more support before parliamentary elections in 2008, taking advantage of conflicts in the MPRP as well as the weak performance of the government headed by the MPRP.

After leaving the coalition government last January, the Democratic Party has asked the government to step down twice, citing its weak performance. Although the MPRP safeguarded the government with its ruling position in parliament, its minister of social welfare and labor was forced to resign.

The Democratic Party said recently it will continue its monitoring work on the government's performance.

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