Altaf Galeyev

Beats Covered:
Local or Foreign:

On May 27, 1998, Bashkir police raided the Ufa offices of Radio Titan, the sole independent radio station in the Republic of Bashkortostan, beating and arresting staff members and supporters. Police seized the radio equipment and detained the entire staff, including Galeyev, the manager and news director, and Lilia Ismagilova, the station’s executive director. These official reprisals came shortly after Radio Titan aired interviews with three opposition candidates who were barred from the June 14 presidential elections.
Ismagilova and the other staff members were released the next day, but Galeyev was held for firing several shots in the air when police stormed the station’s office. On June 4, he was formally charged with “hooliganism” and the illegal use of firearms under Article 213(3) of the Bashkir penal code. Following his arrest, Galeyev was placed in a pre-trial detention center in Ufa. If found guilty, he faces a possible prison sentence of four to seven years. Galeyev, who is in poor health, was allowed to see a lawyer, but no court hearing was held.
On January 5, 1999, a hearing took place to determine whether Galeyev would be released until his trial began. The judge ruled that he must remain in detention. His trial was scheduled to begin on January 21, 1999, but was postponed at the request of Galeyev’s lawyer. A new date has yet to be set.