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Kazakh Journalist Accuses Medical Chief Of Attempted Rape

A correspondent for Kazakhstan's "Liter" newspaper, Zarina Nokrabekova, says she was attacked by the head of a local medical facility because of an article she wrote that was critical of the clinic, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

Nokrabekova says that Sagi Beysenbekov of the Emergency Ambulance Hospital in Taraz, in southern Kazakhstan, invited her to a hotel in late June under the pretext of participating in celebrations marking Media Day. "Without thinking about other things, I went to the place, where he tried to rape me," she said.

Beysenbekov rejects the accusations.

Nokrabekova says she immediately reported the incident to police, but was then pressured into rescinding her complaint. Later, she filed another complaint with the regional Prosecutor's Office.

Journalists in Taraz have sent an open letter to press freedom watchdogs about the case.