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Kazakh journalist stabbed

France,Crime/Disaster/Accident,Media, Sat, 21 Apr 2012 IANS

Moscow, April 21 (IANS/RIA Novosti) A journalist who criticised the Kazakh authorities over their bloody handling of riots in a mining town in December last year was found beaten and stabbed in the stomach and neck.

 

Five men allegedly assaulted Lukpan Akhmedyarov overnight Friday outside his house in Uralsk city in western Kazakhstan. They knocked him unconscious and repeatedly stabbed him in the back, said his employer, the Uralskaya Nedelya weekly.

 

Akhmedyarov was in serious, but stable condition after a three-hour operation Friday.

 

The attackers missed his heart and major arteries, though he has stab wounds to the stomach and neck, the report said.

 

A case has been opened on attempted murder charges, though no suspects were named.

 

In March, Akhmedyarov took part in a rally criticising Kazakhstan authorities for their handling of the riots in Zhanaozen, where a worker strike ended in clashes with police, leading to the death of around 70 people, according to an estimate.

 

Earlier in April, Uralsk prosecutors labelled Akhmedyarov, along with several other activists, a "destructive person" for staging political flash mobs and supporting labour strikes, the Newskaz.ru news agency said.

 

Akhmedyarov said the country's secret service was pressuring his wife over his protest activity and said local prosecutors put him under surveillance, Newskaz.ru said.

 

--IANS/RIA Novosti

 

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