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Abdulmoumin Sherkhonov after the attack.
Police in the southern Tajik city of Kulob have detained two people for attacking Abdumumin Sherkhonov, the editor in chief of the newspaper "Pazhvok" and an RFE/RL freelancer.

Both suspects have confessed to their participation in the attack. A third man sought for involvement in the crime has not yet been arrested.

Sherkhonov says he was on his way to work when three men stopped him. One of them introduced himself as an official of the Interior Ministry, presenting what he said was his ID. The men then threatened Sherkhonov with arrest.

When Sherkhonov refused to talk to them, they started beating him, knocking him to the pavement.

Police have not commented on the case.

Sherkhonov said the attack was probably related to his professional activities.
Osman Hallyev
Osman Hallyev, a longtime correspondent for RFE/RL's Turkmen Service, says he has been placed under what amounts to house arrest in eastern Lebap Province due to his affiliation with RFE/RL.

He says he fears his detention by state security forces is imminent.

Hallyev told RFE/RL's Ashgabat correspondent that his son, daughter-in-law, and son-in-law have all lost their jobs, which he also attributes to his work with RFE/RL.

Hallyev says the local Prosecutor's Office does not respond to his complaints regarding the situation.

In addition, Hallyev's international phone lines have been severed since mid-November and his access to the Internet has also been restricted.

Local officials have promised to deal with the matter as soon as possible.

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"Watchdog" is a blog with a singular mission -- to monitor the latest developments concerning human rights, civil society, and press freedom. We'll pay particular attention to reports concerning countries in RFE/RL's broadcast region.

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