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Journalists, human rights defenders in danger

(CJES/IFEX) - Khakimzhon Khusanov, a reporter with the Uzbek service of Radio Liberty in Osh, and his family are blocked in their house and cannot leave the city, http://www.Uznews.net has reported.

Khusanov is an ethnic Uzbek and his life will be endangered if he leaves the Uzbek quarter, where he lives. The journalist is also concerned about his family, who he cannot take out of Osh.

Khusanov is not the only journalist in danger in Kyrgyzstan. "Our reporter in Osh, Sherzod Yusupov, is hiding in his friends' house. Phones are tapped and we don't discuss the details over the phone. I don't think such things have ever happened," Khusanov told Uznews.net.

The journalist said he has no hopes for the authorities' help in this situation.

CJES expert Almaz Kalet has also had to take his family from the burning city of Osh. Journalists and human rights activists, who are hunted by law enforcement agencies, are facing special dangers in Osh, http://www.ferghana.ru has reported. Human rights activist and journalist Azimzhon Askarov has been arrested in Jalal Abad and Ulugbel Abdursalomov, editor of the newspaper "Diyor", has gone missing. Abdursalomov was abducted while returning from his office.

According to information provided by the human rights center Memorial, Askarov is being subjected to torture in prison. Human Rights Watch, Аmnesty International, and Memorial have spoken out in his defense. "Azimzhon Askarov filmed and photographed killings and destruction in an Uzbek-populated district of the Jalal Abad region. We demand his immediate release," Aisha Jung, an official with the Central Asia program at Аmnesty International, told "Novyye Izvestiya".

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
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  • Two journalists detained as violence continues

    CPJ called on authorities to release Ulugbek Abdusalomov and Azimjon Askarov, and to ensure the safety of other journalists working in southern Kyrgyzstan.



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