Former mining minister in Kyrgyzstan arrested for embezzlement

The Associated Press says Uchkunbek Tashbayev, former head of the state mineral resources agency, has been arrested over suspect deals involving mining concessions and embezzling unrefined gold.

Tashbayev was already in the outs after he was dropped from the mining agency in September and replaced.

Centerra Gold operates its Kumtor Mine in the country. The company is fighting off nationalization charges and accusations of environmental mis-management.

Kyrgyzstan is ranked in the bottom 10 of the Fraser Institute's ranking of attractive mining jurisdictions, finding company alongside Honduras, Guatemala, Bolivia, Venezuela, India, Philippines, Ecuador, Indonesia, and Vietnam.

Image of an up-ended Kyrgyzstan truck Dave Proffer