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Kazakh Journalists Detained

Kazakhstan - Detained journalists leave the Almaly region police station. Almaty, 26Aug2010.
Police in Almaty detained a group of journalists today and kept them at a police station for three hours without any explanation, RFE's
Kazakh Service reports.

The correspondents from RFE and the local newspapers "Alash Ainasy," "Ush Qiyan," "Dorozhny Patrul," and "Orda KZ" were detained when trying to attend the trial of an alleged leader of a religious group that has been branded extremist.

The Almaly District Court in Almaty is trying a leader of the NGO
Senim-Bilim-Omir (Trust-Knowledge-Life), a Sufi group. No details of the case have been made public.

RFE correspondent Kuanyshbek Kari says the police demanded written
explanations why the journalists wanted to attend the trial, searched their professional equipment and personal belongings, and took their pictures and finger prints.

Reported by RFE's Kazakh Service and O wire.