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Kazakhstan: Government Critic Flees, Seeks Refuge in Europe

A few days after going missing, Kazakhstani government critic and journalist Ramazan Yesergepov has resurfaced in Paris and announced he is moving into exile to avoid arrest.

“Everything is fine with Ramazan Yesergepov, he is under the protection of Reporters Without Borders. He left the country because he suspected that there were plans to fabricate a new trumped-up criminal case against him,” journalist and colleague Rozlana Taukina wrote on her Facebook page on August 4.

Yesergepov was formerly editor of an obscure and sporadically published Almaty-based newspaper called Alma-Ata Info. In August 2009, he was sentenced to three years in jail for purportedly reproducing classified information in an article in his newspaper. He has since lobbied to have his conviction overturned, arguing that he was denied a fair trial.

Taukina cited Yesergepov as saying he believed he was going to be set up to avoid him continuing to appeal his conviction.

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Kazakhstan: Government Critic Flees, Seeks Refuge in Europe

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