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Uzbek rights activist arrested, held on extortion charges

[JURIST] Uzbek police have arrested activist Mukhtabar Tojibaeva [HRW press release], hours before she was expected to attend a human rights conference. Tojibaeva, who heads up the human rights organization Fiery Hearts, has been a vocal critic of the Uzbek government's alleged massacre [JURIST report] of 200 Uzbek citizens during an uprising [JURIST report] in the town of Andijan on May 13. She is currently being held on charges of extortion, New York-based Human Rights Watch announced Thursday. Human rights groups believe the charges against Tojibaeva were fabricated, and the arrest calculated to silence her vocal criticism of the Uzbek government. The Guardian has more.

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