Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders Annual Report 2002 - Kazakhstan

Journalist attacked27

On 28th August 2002, Mr. Sergey Duvanov, editor in chief of the information bulletin Human Rights in Kazakhstan and in the World, published by the Kazakhstan-based International Bureau for Human Rights and the Rule of Law, KIBHL, was attacked by three unknown persons in front of his house in Almaty. Mr. Duvanov, who sustained serious head injuries, was found unconscious and taken to hospital.

On 9th July Mr. Duvanov, who also writes for opposition websites, was summoned to the office of the National Security Committee (KNB) in Almaty and informed that he was being prosecuted by the Prosecutor's Office for "insulting the honour and dignity of the President" (Art. 318 of the Criminal Code). Following his interrogation, the investigators searched his apartment and the offices of the KIBHL and confiscated computers and a number of documents. On 11th July the journalist was interrogated a second time for almost four hours. The investigation is thought to be related to an article published on 6th May denouncing top State officials.

On 28th October Mr. Duvanov was held for questioning on suspicion of rape, and on 29th October he began a hunger strike to protest his detention, but was obliged to break it off shortly afterwards due to ill health. On 6th November he was formally charged with raping a minor. This arrest occurred just as Mr. Duvanov was preparing to travel to discuss the Human Rights situation in Kazakhstan publicly.

[Refworld note: This report as posted on the FIDH website (www.fidh.org) was in pdf format with country chapters run together by region. Footnote numbers have been retained here, so do not necessarily begin at 1.]

27. See Urgent Appeal KAZ 001/0802/OBS 053-KAZ 001/0802/OBS 053.1.


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