Bishkek, 21 May 1997 (RFE/RL) -The judge in Bishkek in the trial of Yrysbek Omurzakov today ordered a new investigation into charges against the Kyrgyz journalist.
Omurzakov was in court on charges of libel for a story he authored about abuse of power by a Bishkek factory director.
The Committee for the Protection of Journalists sent a letter to Kyrgyz President Askar Akayev yesterday asking for the president's intervention in the case. It said that if Omurzakov is sent to jail he will be the first journalist imprisoned for his writings in the countries of the former Soviet Union or Europe.
Omurzakov remains in detention pending the results of the new investigation.