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Supporters Of Jailed Kazakh Activist Face Prosecution

A Kazakh activist has been found guilty of holding an unsanctioned public action and sentenced to the equivalent of a $213 fine, RFE/RL's Kazakh Service reports.

Viktor Kovtunovsky staged a public action on September 9 in support of the director of the nongovernmental group Kazakh Bureau for Human Rights, Yevgeny Zhovtis.

Zhovtis was sentenced to four years in jail for his alleged role in a deadly traffic accident last week.

Kovtunovsky appeared on Almaty's central square and unfolded a sign saying, "Today -- Zhovtis, Tomorrow -- You!"

Two other activists, Bareta Yergalieva and Tatyana Savina, who joined Kovtunovsky's action will face trial on September 14.

Zhovtis and his supporters believe the case was ordered by higher officials.