New York, June 15, 2010—We issued the following statement after confirming that police in the eastern Uzbek city of Andijan continue to hold independent Uzbek reporter Aleksei Volosevich for a third consecutive day. Volosevich had travelled to the border with Kyrgyzstan to report on the conditions for refugees, fleeing the bloody ethnic clashes between ethnic Uzbeks and Kyrgyz in Kyrgyzstan’s south, when he was arrested for unknown reasons on Sunday. His personal documents were not on him at the time, and his mobile phone is turned off.
“We call on Andijan police to immediately release our colleague Aleksei Volosevich and allow him to report on the grave humanitarian crisis in the Fergana Valley,” CPJ Europe and Central Asia Program Coordinator Nina Ognianova said. “Uzbek authorities have a history of harassing Volosevich to prevent him from reporting the news independently. This shameless record must be reversed.”