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May 23, 2006 -- Reports from Uzbekistan say two human rights activists may soon be brought before court on extortion charges
A spokesman for the Interior Ministry said today investigators had concluded that Azamjon Farmonov and Alisher Karamatov attempted to blackmail a resident of Jizzakh, in central Uzbekistan. He said the probe was now over and that their case was being transferred to court.
Farmonov and Karamatov work for the Human Rights Society of Uzbekistan (HRSU). They were arrested on April 29, soon after they had published a report on the abuse of farmers' rights in Jizzakh region.
The HRSU denies the accusations brought against its two members, saying they are politically motivated.