Half of Kyrgyz schools close due to power shortages
Almost half of Kyrgyz schools have closed for two months due to the shortages of electricity needed for heating as the impoverished Central Asian state struggles with an energy crisis, reported Reuters.
"According to a government decree ... all schools that use electricity for heating will be closed until February 28," an Education Ministry spokeswoman said.
Kyrgyzstan, which mostly relies on hydroelectric power, discharged too much water from its key Toktogul reservoir last winter due to unusually cold weather. It introduced electricity rationing earlier this year to save power.
The crisis has triggered public criticism of President Kurmanbek Bakiyev who has run the volatile state, home to a U.S. military airbase, since 2005.