Afrique Ameriques Asie Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
Kazakhstan23 June 2005

Call for enquiry into road accident that killed opposition journalist

Reporters Without Borders called today for an investigation of a road accident that eventually killed pro-opposition journalist Batyrkhan Darimbet, editor of the opposition weekly Azat, noting that others had died in similar circumstances in recent years. Darimbet died on 7 June, six days after receiving serious head injuries in a crash near the city, on the road to Almaty.

"We are sceptical about this supposed accident," the worldwide press freedom organisation said, "since several other opposition journalists have died this way in the past few years. We call on interior minister Zautbek Turisbekov to open an impartial enquiry into a possible murder. We shall monitor developments closely."

Darimbet, who also contributed to the radio station Azatyk, had been in Taraz to set up a local branch of DVK, an opposition group he set up after the banning of the Democratic Choice for Kazakhstan (DVK) party.

A car crashed into his jeep late at night on 1 June near the village of Lugovoye and the jeep overturned. Darimbet, the only person hurt, was taken to hospital in Taraz. A similar accident occurred on the same road on 16 November 2002, killing another opposition journalist, Nuri Muftakh. Five opposition journalists have been killed in road accidents in Kazakhstan since 2002.

Askhat Sharipzhanov, of the online newspaper Navigator (, died in hospital in Almaty on 20 July last year, five days after being injured when a car crashed into him as he left his offices.

  In this country
2 March - Kazakhstan
Independent newspaper faces closure after astronomical fine for “defamation”
21 January - Kazakhstan
RFE/RL website editor beaten unconscious in Almaty
7 January - Kazakhstan
Masked security men arrest hospitalised newspaper editor on charge of divulging confidential information
3 December - Kazakhstan
Intelligence agency pressures newspaper editor to reveal source of leak
15 October - Kazakhstan
Region’s most popular blog service blocked because of former ambassador’s blog

in the annual report
Kazakhstan - Annual Report 2008
Kazakhstan - Annual report 2007
Kazakhstan - 2006 Annual report

Europe press releases
4 June - Kosovo
Rrokum TV station still excluded by national broadcasting network
2 June - Ukraine
Potential witness’s death deals severe blow to probe into journalist’s murder
2 June - Turkey
Woman journalist held for past five weeks on baseless charge of link to armed group
2 June - Russia
Journalist seeks asylum in Finland after being convicted for prison torture articles
29 May - France
Regrettable decision by appeal court to lift ban on magazine only if offending photo is covered up

5 February 2009 - Bulgaria
“Resignation or resistance, Bulgaria’s embattled press hesitates”
28 January 2009 - Russia
Fact-finding visit : Moscow double murder may have been linked to November attack on local newspaper editor
27 June 2008 - Turkey
Investigation report into the detention of journalist Haci Bogatekin, imprisoned for more than two months and facing ten and a half years in prison

Sign the petitions
Jusuf Ruzimuradov

Europe archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives