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Russian Ombudsman To Probe Activist's Detention

(RFE/RL) August 1, 2007 -- Russia's human rights ombudsman, Vladimir Lukin, has said he will investigate the case of an opposition activist who says she is being held against her will in a Murmansk psychiatric clinic.

Larisa Arap, a member of the United Civic Front opposition movement, says she is being held at the institution as a reprisal from health workers for negative articles she published in a newspaper. Arap had alleged that patients at another local psychiatric clinic were beaten and sexually abused.

Arap is the head of the Murmansk branch of the United Civic Front. AP quoted a spokeswoman for the movement, Marina Litvinovich, as saying that Arap's detention "smacks of the Soviet-era practice of locking dissenters in psychiatric clinics."

(Reuters, Interfax, AP)

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