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Embattled Kazakh Lawyer Again Placed In Psychiatric Clinic


Embattled Kazakh lawyer Zinaida Mukhortova has again been detained and placed in a psychiatric clinic.

Mukhortova's relatives told RFE/RL that police detained her on July 2 in her apartment in the city of Balkhash, where she had returned from self-imposed exile in Russia.

The deputy chief physician of the Balkhash psychiatric clinic, Rysbek Ysqaqov, confirmed to RFE/RL that Mukhortova is currently incarcerated in the institution.

Mukhortova, 56, fled Kazakhstan in December after a Qaraghandy regional court rejected her appeal to cancel her forced psychiatric treatment. Doctors concluded in August 2013 that she suffered from delusions and needed treatment.

Mukhortova was forced to undergo psychiatric treatment twice in 2012 and 2013. She insisted she was mentally fit and that the legal actions against her were politically motivated.

According to Mukhortova, authorities began investigating her mental competence only after she filed complaints against a high-ranking local official.

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    RFE/RL's Kazakh Service

    RFE/RL's Radio Azattyq has been an important source of information for people in Kazakhstan for decades. In 2009, Azattyq won the prestigious 2009 Online Journalism Award for "standing in defense of citizen’s rights to seek and receive information."

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