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“Ironically, the bill will not affect these facilities, as they can easily re-profile into entertainment houses just as they did in Russia,” Mr. Tashmanbetov says.

There have been accusations of corruption on both sides of the debate.

Mr. Tashmanbetov says the speed with which the ban was drafted and enacted points to members of parliament having vested interests in it.

There have been lingering concerns that some parliament members could benefit from keeping casinos outside of the law through links to organized crime.

Mr. Jetigenov denies that he stands to gain financially from the ban.

“If I had any personal interests, I would have accepted the bribes I was offered by those who are involved in gambling industry in Kyrgyzstan,” he says. “Yes, I was offered money several times, a good sum of money both from legal and criminal sources to take the bill down. But I did not accept it, as I think we are doing the right thing.”