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Kyrgyz Supporters Of Jailed Kazakh Rights Activist Get Warning

Yevgeny Zhovtis
Yevgeny Zhovtis
BISHKEK -- Three Kyrgyz activists have been detained for supporting jailed Kazakh human rights activist Yevgeny Zhovtis, RFE/RL's Kyrgyz Service reports.

Sardar Bagishbekov of the Voice of Liberty Foundation, Nadira Eshamtova of the Youth Rights Group, and Almaz Esengeldiev of the Human Rights Defenders Council organized a protest in front the Kazakh Embassy in Bishkek, demanding Zhovtis's immediate release.

Zhovtis, the head of Kazakhstan's Bureau for Human Rights, was sentenced to four years in jail for his role in a deadly traffic accident last month.

His colleagues consider his case to be politically motivated and Western organizations and governments have called for his case to be reviewed.

The verdict in his case has been appealed.

The three Kyrgyz activists were detained in front of the Kazakh Embassy and brought to Bishkek's Lenin District police department.

They told RFE/RL they were warned about holding an "unsanctioned protest action" and later released.