CPJ Blog

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Kyrgyzstan

Blog   |   Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, China, Internet, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Vietnam

Fighting bogus piracy raids, Microsoft issues new licenses

CPJ has documented for several years the use of spurious anti-piracy raids to shut down and intimidate media organizations in Russia and the former Soviet republics. Offices have been shut down, and computers seized. Often, security agents make bogus claims to be representing or acting on behalf of the U.S. software company Microsoft.

December 7, 2010 3:10 PM ET

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Blog   |   Journalist Assistance, Kyrgyzstan, Nepal, Russia, Uganda

Help journalists in need: An appeal

Beketov must be transported to trial in an ambulance while his attackers walk free. (Foundation in Support of Mikhail Beketov)

Mikhail Beketov is lucky to be alive, although I'm sure there are days when he doesn't think so. On November 13, 2008, the environmental reporter who campaigned against a highway that would have destroyed a forest in Khimki, a town outside Moscow, was beaten nearly to death by men with metal bars. The attackers made a special effort to destroy his hands and left him to die in the November cold. He would have if neighbors had not noticed him and called the police 24 hours after the attack.

Blog   |   Internet, Kyrgyzstan, Russia

Microsoft moves to fight anti-piracy raids in Russia

Microsoft's Brad Smith (Francois Lenoir/Reuters)On September 11, The New York Times reported on the use of aggressive anti-piracy raids by Russian authorities to intimidate advocacy groups and independent media outlets. The article noted that these raids are usually prompted by false reports of pirated Microsoft software, sometimes from individuals claiming to represent Microsoft. This is a trend that CPJ has documented for some time. We've recorded incidents of independent outlets like Novaya GazetaTolyatinskoye ObozreniyeMinuty Veka, and Kyrgyzstan's STAN TV having offices shut down and computers seized on the orders of lawyers claiming to be acting for Microsoft, even when the companies' software licenses are in order and shown to the investigators.

Blog   |   Internet, Kyrgyzstan, Kyrgyzstan

Microsoft, piracy, and independent media in Kyrgyzstan

Bakiyev's government invoked Microsoft's name in a raid that shut a critical TV station. (AP/Sergei Grits)

When the independent television outlet Stan TV was raided by Kyrgyz financial police on April 1, authorities claimed they were investigating the use of unlicensed software. The timing of the raid implied a different motivation. As CPJ reported at the time, the day before, the Kyrgyz courts had shut down the pro-opposition newspaper Forum. In the previous month, two other newspapers, Achyk Sayasat (Open Politics) and Nazar (Viewpoint), were suspended for allegedly insulting the now-ousted president, Kurmanbek Bakiyev. The regional news Web sites Ferghana and Centrasia were blocked as well. Stan TV was in the midst of covering the growing opposition in the country, and the raid effectively silenced the station.

April 14, 2010 4:34 PM ET

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Blog   |   Kyrgyzstan

Kyrgyzstan's familiar path: Press repression, ousted leaders

Kyrgyz police, after firing on protesters, come under attack from an angry crowd. (AP/Ivan Sekretarev)

History seemed to repeat itself this week in the mountainous Central Asian nation of Kyrgyzstan. For the second time in five years, angry protesters—ignored and suppressed by a corrupt government—ousted yet another president.