| Irek Minzakievich Murtazin|
April 5, 1964Bogatye Saby, Tatarstan, Russia
Journalist, activist, blogger, political prisoner
Irek Murtazin Wikipedia
Irek Minzakievich Murtazin (Tatar: Ирек Мортазин, İrek Mortazin; Russian: Ирек Минзакиевич Муртазин) (b. 5 April 1964, Bogatye Saby, Sabinskii region, Tatar ASSR) is a journalist and blogger, specialist of the International Institute of Research in Policy and the Humanities (Russian: Международного Института гуманитарно-политических исследований) in Moscow and, since September 2008, publisher of the newspaper Kazan News (Russian: Казанские вести). Murtazin previously served as director of the Minsk bureau of the Russian state television station "Russia" (2003–2004), director of the state television station "Tatarstan" (2002–2003), and press secretary of the president of the Republic of Tatarstan, Mintimer Shaimiev (1999–2002).
In September 2008, he posted information to his blog to the effect that Tatar president Shaimiev had died; this information proved to be false. As a result, he was the subject of a criminal investigation into the matter. On November 26, 2009, Murtazin was found guilty of libel and "instigating hatred and hostility" to an ethnic or social group and sentenced to 1 year, 9 months of hard labor. Murtazin had previously clashed with local and federal elites in his journalistic work; he resigned his post at "Tatarstan" on November 14, 2003 in the wake of a controversial segment in which program participants criticized Tatar policies and the war in Chechnya. In December 2008, he was attacked and beaten near his Kazan apartment by unidentified persons.
In addition to his work as a newspaper and television journalist, Murtazin has published several monographs.The Last Romantic (Russian: Последний романтик)
The Death of a Television Magnate (Russian: Смерть телемагната)
The Island of Tatarstan (Russian: Остров Татарстан)
Mintimer Shaimiev: Last President of Tatarstan (Russian: Минтимер Шаймиев: последний президент Татарстана) (Cheboksary, 2007)