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Former Kazakh diplomat Rakhat Aliyev arrested in Vienna

The former son-in-law of the Kazkh president, who is wanted in Kazakhstan on charges of murder and kidnapping, has been arrested in Vienna.

Austrian authorities has in the past twice denied to extradite Rakhat Aliyev, who until 2007 had been an ambassador in Austria, to the Central Asian country saying that human rights violations there mean he was not guaranteed a fair trail.

A lawyer for Aliyev said on Thursday that the Austrian arrest warrant included charges "from murder to kidnapping" although further details of the charges have not been released. On hearing that an arrest warrant had been issued for his arrest in May, Aliyev voluntarily flew into Vienna from his home in Malta, and gave himself in to police.

Aliyev was once married to the eldest daughter of Kazakh President Nursultan Nazarbayev. He has been in self-imposed exile in Europe since falling out with Nazarbayev in 2007 when he criticised his powerful father-in-law and declared himself a presidential candidate.

The following year, Aliyev was sentenced in absentia to 20 years imprisonment for the abduction of the bank managers. He is also wanted for murder and other serious charges in the country - charges he claims are politically motivated.

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