September 21, 2006 -- An independent Uzbek website claims a journalist arrested recently on suspicion of accepting bribes has confessed and might be brought before a court any day.
The uznews.net website quoted the sister of Ulugbek Khaidarov -- whom relatives suggested after his arrest in the city of Jizzakh was framed -- as saying her brother has "confessed to everything."
Khaidarov's sister, Nortoji, says the man investigating Ulugbek's case told her that her brother could face up between five and 10 years in jail.
Khaidarov was arrested on September 14 on charges of receiving $400 in bribes, charges that his family has said are untrue.
Uzbek authorities regularly shut down independent and opposition media and prosecute dissenting voices when they arise in the media.
Opposition sources and Western diplomats have accused Uzbek officials of using torture against detainees.
Presidential Cousin, Journalist Still Unaccounted For
The same website, uznews.net, reported today that authorities have refused to comment on the disappearance of another independent journalist in Jizzakh, President Islam Karimov's nephew, Jamshid.
In comments to uznews.net, the regional head of the National Security Service, Marat Khalturdyev, described Jamshid Karimov's case as a "private" one.
Jamshid Karimov disappeared on September 12 after visiting his mother in the hospital. Relatives believe he was arrested.