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After Surviving Attack, Independent Kazakh Journalist Gets International Award


Lukpan Akhmedyarov (file photo)
The Almaty-based independent media-rights organization Adil Soz has announced that Kazakh journalist Lukpan Akhmedyarov has won the Peter Mackler Award for Courageous and Ethical Journalism.

The award "honors reporters and editors who have demonstrated a commitment to fairness in the story well told, and a matching commitment to defending the right to publish and air that story in countries who repress independent media."

The award is given by the Global Media Forum Training Group, a nonprofit organization dedicated to journalism training, and the U.S. branch of the press-freedom watchdog Reporters Without Borders.

In April, Akhmedyarov, a correspondent for the "Uralskaya nedelya" weekly in the western city of Oral, was attacked by unknown assailants who stabbed him and shot him with a pneumatic pistol.

He later was found guilty of insulting a local official in West Kazakhstan Oblast and ordered to pay the official 5 million tenges ($33,000).

Akhmedyarov says the attack and lawsuit against him were politically motivated.
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