A colleague, Mukhit Iskakov, told journalists in Almaty today that Omarshanova had bought a weapon to protect herself.
"Oralgaisha told me that she had received several threats by telephone," he said. "After that, she got a licence and bought a Winchester rifle in Qaraganda. She officially registered it in Astana, and then we moved to Almaty together."
Omarshanova has worked for the "Law and Justice" newspaper for about a year and has written a number of stories linking businessmen to corruption.
Kazakh Interior Ministry spokesman Bagdat Kojhakhmetov told RFE/RL that police were investigating Omarshanova's disappearance but said they didn't have any information on her whereabouts yet.
(with material from Reuters)
Ukrainian journalists demonstrating against censorship in December 2006 (RFE/RL)
'DOMINO EFFECT.' Two experts with the Committee to Protect Journalists told an RFE/RL-Radio Free Asia briefing on February 6 that their organization is concerned Russia's increasingly restrictive media environment is being copied by other countries in the CIS.
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