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Kazakhstan: Celebrity Beating Puts Spotlight on Issue of Domestic Violence

In response to the violent June 10 attack on Kazakhstani music producer and actress Bayan Yessentayeva by her husband, other women in Kazakhstan have posted photos to social media websites of themselves as victims of domestic abuse in a campaign called #‎яБаян (#IamBayan). Kazakhstan women’s rights group OON-Zhenshiny claims around 500 women die as a result of domestic violence in the Central Asian country every year. (Photos: Assel Marzhakupova; Ainura Absemetova)

Pop music producer and actress Bayan Yessentayeva may not be the most beloved celebrity in Kazakhstan, but even detractors admire her seemingly effortless glamor and icy determination.
 
That studied image of invulnerability was rudely shattered earlier this month when reports emerged she had, like many of her countrywomen, became a victim of chilling domestic violence.
 
Suspecting infidelity, Bakhytbek Yessentayev savagely beat his wife, leaving her with injuries to her skull and stab wounds. The case provoked considerable shock, although not much surprise, given how common the problem is in Kazakhstan.
 

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Aktan Rysaliev is a pseudonym for a journalist working in Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Kazakhstan: Celebrity Beating Puts Spotlight on Issue of Domestic Violence

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