Would you believe two tabloid journalists abducted and threatened to kill her -- as a gag for their paper's "amusement" section?
Journalists' desire to feed the public's curiosity can sometimes take them very far -- but it can also be their downfall. That was the case this week in Kyrgyzstan, when well-known television presenter Nazira Aitbekova was the victim of a cruel prank that has led to the firing of two journalists and prompted a police investigation.
Aitbekova provided details of the incident at a press conference on November 1.The anchor for the public television station KTR said that on October 30 she was approached by two men who "put a pistol to my head, put me in a car, and took me away." The men drove Aitbekova to a deserted area outside Bishkek, forced her to partially undress, and threatened to kill her. She was told to close her eyes before being ordered to open them again.
It was then that she realized she was a victim of "tamashator," a practical joke, concocted by journalists from the tabloid Super-Info. "When I heard 'This is a surprise from Super-Info,' I understood they had humiliated me for so long, and I fell down [to the ground] and started crying," Aitbekova said. "At that moment, they started asking me again and again: 'How do you feel?' How should I feel when I was sure [I was going to] die and say goodbye to my child?"