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Andrey Bandarenka
A jailed Belarus opposition activist has been transferred to a prison hospital, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reports.

Andrey Bandarenka of the United Civic Party was found guilty of financial mismanagement and sentenced to seven years in jail last month. He has been on a hunger strike since October 19 in protest of the sentence.

Bandarenka and his supporters say the charges against him were politically motivated.

Bandarenka's lawyer, Zmitr Laeuski, told RFE/RL that his client looked very sick when he saw him on November 4.

Laeuski said he is trying to arrange a meeting with Bandarenka to get a clear picture of his current condition.

Bandarenka was a candidate in the Belarusian parliamentary elections last year but was not elected.

Minsk authorities filed a lawsuit against him after he tried to initiate a check of the election results after he charged that they might have been rigged to keep him from winning.
Feruza Jumanova (left), the wife of jailed Uzbek journalist Dilmurod Sayyid, and his daughter Rukhshona
The family of jailed Uzbek journalist and human rights activist Dilmurod Sayyid died in a car accident on their way to visit him in prison, RFE/RL's Uzbek Service reports.

Sayyid's lawyer, Rukhiddin Komilov, told RFE/RL that Sayyid's wife, Barno Jumanova, and their 6-year-old daughter died in an accident on the way from Tashkent to Navoi, where Sayyid is serving his prison sentence.

Sayyid, 48, was sentenced on July 30 to 12 1/2 years in jail on extortion and forgery charges, which he denied and said were politically motivated.

He was an outspoken critic of the human rights situation in Uzbekistan and was under pressure from officials since 2005 when he sharply criticized rights violations in the country in an article in the newspaper "Advokat-press."

The newspaper was shut down in 2005.

Sayyid's lawyer, family, and supporters said the charges against him were trumped up for political reasons and several human rights organizations expressed concern at his arrest and subsequent sentencing.

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"Watchdog" is a blog with a singular mission -- to monitor the latest developments concerning human rights, civil society, and press freedom. We'll pay particular attention to reports concerning countries in RFE/RL's broadcast region.


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