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Khaled el-Masri
The European Court of Human Rights has found Macedonia responsible for the torture and ill-treatment of a man who was mistaken for a terrorism suspect.

The December 13 decision by the court in Strasbourg, France is the first major legal victory for Khaled el-Masri.

The Lebanese-born German citizen says he was abducted by the CIA in Macedonia in 2003.

El-Masri says the CIA kept him in a Skopje hotel for 23 days and then interrogated him at a secret prison in Afghanistan, where he remained until 2004.

Macedonia denied involvement in the kidnapping, but the court ordered Skopje to pay $78,300 in damages.

Previously, el-Masri brought unsuccessful legal cases in the United States and Europe against the practice of “extraordinary rendition” or the capture and extrajudicial transfer of suspects from one country to another.

Based on reporting by AP and dpa
Tatyana Trubacheva, editor in chief of the opposition newspaper "Golos respubliki"
ALMATY, Kazakhstan -- A court in Almaty has fined the editor in chief of a banned opposition newspaper for using another newspaper's pages for her weekly's materials.

Tatyana Trubacheva, the chief editor of "Golos respubliki" (The Voice of Republic), told RFE/RL that she was fined $100 on December 12 for placing her written material in the "Azat" (Free) newspaper on November 30.

Trubacheva's newspaper, along with several other opposition newspapers, was suspended and later banned after prosecutors requested in November that two opposition groups and several opposition media outlets be designated extremist.

Trubacheva says she will appeal the decision by the court.

The Almaty-based Adil Soz (A Just Word) media-rights group announced earlier on December 12 that a court in Almaty banned the opposition television channel K-Plus, its two websites, and several print publications carrying the channel's material.

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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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