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About 400 people participate in rally in support of freedom of speech in Bishkek

A peaceful rally in support of freedom of speech and against corruption began on Ala-Too square in Bishkek. About 400 people gathered at the monument to April 7, 2010 events.

The reason for the rally is information that the Matraimovs filed a lawsuit against three media outlets, including 24.kg news agency, and journalist Ali Toktakunov. The total amount of the claim is 60 million soms.

Participants demand dismissal of the judge Zhyldyz Ibraimova (she made a decision to freeze accounts of the media), and urge all judges, to whom the lawsuit will be sent, to dismiss it as violating freedom of speech.

The protesters also demand to end persecution and repression of citizens, who oppose corruption and criticize actions of the authorities, as this violates their constitutional rights. Participants call on all three branches of power to protect the freedoms and rights guaranteed by the Basic Law of the Kyrgyz Republic.

Recall, the reason for the first rally was the authorities’ inaction against corruption — the lack of reaction in the highest echelons of power to the journalistic investigation by Kloop, Azattyk and OCCRP on corruption schemes at the Customs.