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Fund-Raising Launched For Cameras In Kyrgyz Detention Center

BAZAR-KORGON, Kyrgyzstan -- Local authorities in southern Kyrgyzstan are trying to raise enough money to buy video cameras for a detention center, following the death of a man who was beaten while in custody there, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

The Bazar-Korgon district in Jalal-Abad Oblast launched the fund-raising campaign today in a bid to prevent violence against inmates.

RFE/RL's correspondent reports that the fundraising activities are a joint initiative by the public council for human rights at the regional prosecutor's office and the Bazar-Korgon district governor.

The detention center in Bazar-Korgon needs 300,000 soms ($6,600) to buy the video equipment for its cells.

The idea of installing a video camera in each cell was floated by local officials and activists after the August death of a Russian citizen who authorities admit was beaten by Bazar-Korgon police.

Usmanjan Kholmirzaev, an ethnic Uzbek, died in a Jalal-Abad hospital on August 9, two days after being questioned by police about the deadly clashes between local Uzbeks and Kyrgyz in June last year.

Four policemen suspected of beating Kholmirzaev while interrogating him have been arrested and charged with torture, abuse of office, and extortion.

Bazar-Korgon police chief Ernist Moldokeev was fired later in August.

Read more in Kyrgyz here