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Sergei Mokhnatkin (file photo)
MOSCOW -- A criminal case has been opened against noted Russian rights activist Sergei Mokhnatkin.

On January 2, a Moscow court sanctioned his detention for two months.

Mokhnatkin is accused of attacking a policeman in Moscow during a Strategy-31 protest on New Year's Eve.

Twenty-eight people were detained during the protest, which was held in support of Article 31 of the Russian Constitution, which guarantees the right of peaceful assembly.

All of those detained were released, except Mokhnatkin.

Mokhnatkin first came to prominence when he was detained during a protest in 2009 for attacking a police officer. He was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison.

Amnesty International recognized him as a prisoner of conscience.

He was pardoned by then-President Dmitry Medvedev in April 2012.
Bobomurod Razzoqov
A jailed 61-year-old Uzbek rights activist has been denied his freedom, despite a recently passed amnesty law.

A court in Uzbekistan's southwestern Bukhara region on December 27 upheld a decision by the General Directorate for Penitentiaries that the amnesty not be applied to Bobomurod Razzoqov.

A representative for the Ezgulik (Compassion) human rights group, Abdurakhmon Tashanov, told RFE/RL that the amnesty for Razzoqov was denied due to alleged violations of penitentiary regulations.

An amnesty adopted this month stipulated that inmates 60 years of age or older were eligible for early release.

Razzoqov, the chairman of Ezgulik's Bukhara branch, was sentenced to four years in jail in September on charges of human trafficking.

Human Rights Watch issued a statement in September calling the charges against Razzoqov "retaliation" by Uzbek authorities for his human rights work.

-- RFE/RL's Uzbek Service

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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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