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Kazakh Faces Prosecution In Uzbekistan For Videos On Phone

  • RFE/RL's Uzbek Service

Vitaly Nenchenko could face five years in prison.

A Kazakh citizen has been arrested in Uzbekistan over what local authorities said were two extremist videos found on his mobile phone.

Vitaly Nenchenko's wife, Tamila Beksheneva, said in a Kazakh TV report on June 6 that her husband was arrested in late May during a trip to Uzbekistan with his family.

According to Beksheneva, Uzbek border guards studied Nenchenko's phone and found two videos that they called extremist. Nenchenko was later charged with smuggling extremist materials to Uzbekistan and has been in Uzbek custody for more than a week.

Kazakh Foreign Ministry spokesman Anuar Zhainaqov said in a televised statement that the Kazakh Embassy in Tashkent had been in contact both with Nenchenko's relatives and Uzbek officials.

If convicted, Nenchenko could be sentenced to five years in prison.

In 2016 another Kazakh national, Aqmal Rasulov, was sentenced to five years in prison in Uzbekistan after border guards found videos on his mobile phone that Uzbek authorities defined as extremist.

And in 2012, an Uzbek court imposed the same sentence on Kazakh citizen Ermek Qosmaghambetovl for videos on his laptop that were deemed extremist.

With reporting by KTK-TV
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