An independent Uzbek journalist, who reported for the Voice of America, was shot dead by an unknown assailant in Kyrgyzstan on Wednesday.

VOA's Uzbek Service says Alisher Saipov was killed in front of his office in the southern city of Osh.

In an interview with the Uzbek Service, a person who works for the BBC, Shahida Tulaganova, said Saipov had expressed concern that he was being trailed by what he believed were Uzbek security agents.

The chairman of the federal government agency that oversees the Voice of America, the Broadcasting Board of Governors' James Glassman, called for a full investigation into the shooting.

The 26-year-old Saipov was a native of Osh. He began to cover political developments in Central Asia for VOA's Uzbek Service in 2001.

Saipov is survived by his wife and infant daughter.

VOA's director, Danforth Austin, said he was saddened by Saipov's death, and he reaffirmed VOA's commitment to covering news events in Kyrgyzstan.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.