1 november 2014

Central Asia news

DRD Partnership: Gulnara Karimova under house arrest, while “global support grows”

DRD Partnership: Gulnara Karimova under house arrest, while “global support grows”

16.10.2014 10:39 msk Human Rights Politics Uzbekistan

A new letter DRD Partnership circulated late Tuesday is entitled “Recent reports about Gulnara are false and deliberately misleading.” “Gulnara” here is the elder daughter of Uzbek President Islam Karimov, while DRD Partnership is a London-based consulting company that calls itself “an official representative” of the beleaguered and disgraced Uzbek “princess.” This statement Gulnara Karimova’s representatives released is devoid of any specific information and only contains a collection of high-flown sentences. The letter provides no details as to who are “those keeping Gulnara under house arrest” and what “political gain” they are pursuing. No light has been shed on those exerting “pressure of objection from all those around the world and within Uzbekistan” and demanding justice for Gulnara. Seeking more information on “a number of recent reports” within the letter proved equally futile.

Uzbek-Tajik ties improving: The role Tajik plays in Uzbekistan

12.10.2014 23:11 msk Analytics Human Rights Politics Central Asia Tajikistan Uzbekistan

The text of the entire article below, save minor addenda, is identical with a report carried by the OSCE website. The main findings of said report were delivered at the Human Dimension Implementation Meeting in Warsaw, Poland, on 29 Sep 2014.

“Until the very end”: Human Rights Watch issues report on political prisoners in Uzbekistan

“Until the very end”: Human Rights Watch issues report on political prisoners in Uzbekistan

29.09.2014 04:01 msk Human Rights Politics Uzbekistan

Human Rights Watch presented a report entitled “‘Until the Very End’: Politically Motivated Imprisonment in Uzbekistan” in Warsaw, Poland. The 121-page document is based on 150 in-depth interviews with the relatives of political prisoners, their lawyers, human rights activists and former Uzbek officials. The report author Steve Swedrlow of HRW told Fergana the compilation of the report in question took six years.

That awkward moment! Gulnara Karimova has a new PR team

That awkward moment! Gulnara Karimova has a new PR team

23.09.2014 12:12 msk Human Rights Politics Interview Uzbekistan

Many Russian and European mass media circulated images depicting Gulnara Karimova rudely held by hands by people in fatigues. Ms. Karimova’s “official representative,” Locksley Ryan of Davidson Ryan Dore, provided the images in question. Obviously, this press release sheds no light whatsoever to the status quo Gulnara Karimova is in. If anything, it only stirred more questions. We decided to ask Jelena Kudelko of Davidson Ryan Dore as she was indicated as a contact person in the press release. Jelena asked to provide her with written questions and was quite quick to respond.

Uzbekistan: Festivities for the chosen few, the nation only seen in the crowd scene!

Uzbekistan: Festivities for the chosen few, the nation only seen in the crowd scene!

03.09.2014 07:13 msk Human Rights Politics Uzbekistan

Uzbekistan is marking the 23rd anniversary of its independence this year. Solemn festivities took place in Tashkent with the participation of President Islam Karimov. However, many Tashkent residents do not share the joy of “the greatest and dearest holiday,” while one can easily see hopelessness and despair in the eyes of residents in other parts of the country. When requested to share thoughts about their happy lives, they promptly start describing it in rather negative terms and harsh terms, often peppering their stories with swear words. Because people are tired of waiting for that “bright future” the authorities have been promising for over two decades, and the majority of the population started openly expressing their outrage with their arbitrariness.

Uzbekistan: The Karimov regime is still firm

Uzbekistan: The Karimov regime is still firm

20.02.2014 11:05 msk Analytics Human Rights Business Politics Uzbekistan

On Monday, three closest allies of Gulnara Karimova were forcibly driven to the office of the Prosecutor General of Uzbekistan. These people are close to both her body and pocket, including her common-law husband, who is registered as the owner of her business assets in Uzbekistan and abroad. Such events are unfolding around the Uzbek president’s elder daughter, whose activities are closely investigated into and scrutinized by local investigation bodies since last fall. While some see the weakening regime’s inability to stop these troubles, I look at the situation from a different angle. The destruction of the shadow business empire Gulnara Karimova built does not indicate her father, the president of Uzbekistan, is growing weak; on the contrary, this is a sign of his might.

Uzbekistan: Anti-Gay Law Strikes Terror Into Gay People, but Enriches the Police (18+)

Uzbekistan: Anti-Gay Law Strikes Terror Into Gay People, but Enriches the Police (18+)

07.02.2014 17:15 msk Human Rights Interview Uzbekistan

The topic of homosexuality, along with domestic violence, is tabooed in the press and public discourse in Uzbekistan. Moreover, the Central Asian state is among the remaining few countries where same-sex intercourse is punishable by a harsh prison sentence. Our Tashkent-based correspondent reports on how this law is enforced, based on first-hand experiences of gay people to whom he spoke.

Steve Swerdlow: Czech President must cancel Islam Karimov’s visit to Prague

Steve Swerdlow: Czech President must cancel Islam Karimov’s visit to Prague

06.02.2014 23:13 msk Human Rights Politics Interview Uzbekistan

The president of Uzbekistan will pay a two-day visit to Prague on 21 Feb 2014. Human rights activists in Europe are preparing to greet Islam Karimov with protest rallies: Mutabar Tajibayeva, the head of the Fiery Hearts Club, promises that they will firmly demand Karimov free all political prisoners, cease tortures of detainees and inmates, allow an international inquiry into the Andijan events, ensure conditions for NGO activities, and guarantee the freedom of speech. Fergana interviewed Steve Swerdlow, a representative of Human Rights Watch, about President Karimov’s upcoming visit to Europe.

AN OPEN LETTER TO JOURNALISTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS OF RUSSIA AND UKRAINE, TO ALL THEIR COLLEAGUES WORLDWIDE

AN OPEN LETTER TO JOURNALISTS AND PHOTOGRAPHERS OF RUSSIA AND UKRAINE, TO ALL THEIR COLLEAGUES WORLDWIDE

30.01.2014 12:46 msk Human Rights Uzbekistan

Last night, on Jan. 29, six journalists, photographers and activists have been detained by Uzbek police and taken to an unknown location in Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan. Their names are Umida Akhmedova, Timur Karpov, Alexei Ulko, Ashot Danielyan, Ilgar Gasymov and Gulsum Osmanova. All the detained are our fiends and colleagues, participants of a rally held on Jan. 27 in Tashkent in support of the Euromaidan, an ongoing series of street protests in Ukraine. On that day, they held a brief protest near the Ukrainian embassy building and submitted a petition in support of the Euromaidan in which they urged the government of Prime Minister Azarov to step down (which, in fact, happened in a day). They expressed their support to the people of Ukraine that “rallied against the inhuman, corrupt and totalitarian regime of President Viktor Yanykovych,” according to their petition. They condemned the use of force to the protesters in the Ukrainian capital, Kiev, and other Ukrainian cities and the reluctance of Ukrainian authorities to start a constructive dialogue with political opposition and the public movement at the Maidan.

Uzbekistan: Non Format club photos censored (photo, video)

Uzbekistan: Non Format club photos censored (photo, video)

28.01.2014 10:18 msk Human Rights Arts Uzbekistan

The Non Format photographers club launched the Odno Prostranstvo (One Space) exhibition at the House of Photography in Tashkent on 25 Jan 2014. Initially, 12 photo-artists were to participate, but the works of two were prohibited from being displayed at the very last moment; a number of other artists’ works were partially covered with blank sheets of paper. Chairman of the Academy of Arts of Uzbekistan Akmal Nur and Deputy Chairman Ravshan Mirtajiyev have personally censored said works.

IT break, or Why Migrants Need Internet

IT break, or Why Migrants Need Internet

19.01.2014 11:15 msk Human Rights Migration Internet Russia Uzbekistan

The Sankt-Peterburg Center for Independent Sociological Research issued a report on communicative strategies and information resources, which Uzbek migrants in Russia mostly use. The report is entitled “Uzbek Migrants in Russia: Information Space and Social Communications” and is based on a research held between August 2011 and February 2012. The research in question was held in three Russian cities—Sankt-Peterburg, Pskov, and Kazan, and in Samarkand, Uzbekistan. A total of 46 migrants were interviewed (13 in Kazan, 12 in Pskov, nine in Sankt-Peterburg, and 12 in Samarkand) and editors of three mass media outlets targeting migrants from Central Asia were interviewed.

A former inmate in Uzbekistan: Everything in penitentiaries is aimed at destroying humans

A former inmate in Uzbekistan: Everything in penitentiaries is aimed at destroying humans

15.01.2014 11:32 msk Human Rights Uzbekistan

Nematjon Siddikov was persecuted several times for his human rights advocacy. For his activism in the Human Rights Alliance of Uzbekistan (HRAU), the Fergana Region resident was threatened with death and arson at his house; his family members were assaulted by hired hooligans several times; unknown people threw stones at his house. A year ago, on February 5, 2013, about a hundred people arrived at the Siddikovs family house in several vehicles and threw stones at his house, beat his family members, and later trumped up charges against the head of family and his three sons. Several days prior to this attack, Mr. Siddikov and his sons informed the local authorities about a criminal group engaged in contraband across the Uzbek-Kyrgyz border.

Family Ties: What Enriches Uzbekistan Secret Police Chief’s Family

Family Ties: What Enriches Uzbekistan Secret Police Chief’s Family

11.12.2013 00:35 msk Analytics Human Rights Business Politics Uzbekistan

First daughter Gulnara Karimova’s Twitter updates are the only insight into certain recent events in Uzbekistan. The closure of her charity, Forum Fund, suspension of her TV and radio stations’ licenses, and her hysterics on Twitter in response to those developments point to how powerful Uzbekistan’s National Security Service (NSS) and its chief, Rustam Inoyatov, are.

Uzbekistan: Erk Party… Is there such a party?

Uzbekistan: Erk Party… Is there such a party?

09.12.2013 09:49 msk Human Rights Politics Uzbekistan

The six assembly of the Erk party was scheduled in Tashkent for 3 Dec 2013. But it was not meant to happen: a local café, the venue point for participants, was suddenly closed on that day due to gas cutoff while many regional delegates were prevented from reaching Tashkent. Why are the authorities so afraid of the Erk Party, whose nominee, Muhammad Salih, ran for president in 1991? What kind of party is it anyway, and what issues was the assembly to discuss? Our observer in Tashkent sheds light on such matters in the article below.

Uzbekistan targets NGOs’ finances

Uzbekistan targets NGOs’ finances

06.12.2013 23:45 msk Human Rights Politics Uzbekistan

Fergana learned that Uzbek authorities launched mass inspections of non-governmental non- profit organizations in Uzbekistan. The inspection teams include all the controlling bodies—the ministry of justices, tax agencies and other relevant government arms. One can only speculate as to the causes of this heightened interest the government is displaying in regards with NGOs: many say the reason is the upcoming parliamentary elections in 2014 and the presidential elections in 2015. Or, possibly, the inspections are unleashed in connection with the closure of the Fund Forum, which belonged to Gulnara Karimova; after all, many NGOs received financial assistance from it. Or, possibly, it is one of the last nails in the coffin, so to speak: the authorities are trying to intimated NGOs to step up its control and to force them into curbing contacts with foreign and international organizations. As a reminder, the Uzbek National TV and Radio Company employees are prohibited from traveling abroad since recently, even during vacation.

Other news


Media headlines

RFE/RL Video Provides Evidence That Uzbek IS Militants Are In Kobani, 29.10.2014

News Observer Pakistan experts expect more defections to the Islamic State, 28.10.2014

OpenDemocracy How ISIS impacts on Turkey’s daily life, 25.10.2014

RIAN Aral Sea Dilemma: Human Security and Climate Change Issues, 25.10.2014

GateStone Institute Turkey: The "Great Muslim Democracy", 25.10.2014

Asia Times Uzbek president faults Soviet system, keeps relics, 24.10.2014

Long War Journal Taliban control 3 districts in Afghan provinces of Wardak and Kunduz, 23.10.2014

Eurasia Review Pakistan: The North Waziristan Operations – Analysis, 21.10.2014

RIAN Uzbekistan’s Uztelecom Cracks Down on Skype and WhatsApp, 20.10.2014

Fars Press TV Correspondent Accused of Spying Killed in Turkey, 20.10.2014

Sunday's Zaman Ruling party now more associated with bans than democracy, 19.10.2014

Pakistan Observer PURCHASE AGREEMENT ON CASA-1000 PROJECT SOON, 18.10.2014

Global Research Uzbekistan’s Bubbling Pot of Destabilization, 12.10.2014

Al Arabia At least 31 killed in Turkey protests: minister, 10.10.2014

RFE/RL Does IS Pose A Threat To Central Asia?, 09.10.2014

Guardian Turkey has good reasons for caution, 09.10.2014

Dawn US drone strike kills four in North Waziristan, 09.10.2014

Eurasianet.org Uzbekistan: US Slams Tashkent over Continuing Child Labor, 09.10.2014

Daily Sabah A very difficult time for Turkish foreign policy, 09.10.2014

Hurriyet One killed, several injured in ISIL protests across Turkey as curfew declared, 07.10.2014

Foreign Policy Drone strikes continue in North Waziristan, 07.10.2014

Eurasianet Central Asian States Are World’s Leading Water Wasters, 07.10.2014

CNN ISIS set to capture Kobani, finish major land grab, 07.10.2014

Reuters Pakistani Taliban declare allegiance to Islamic State and global jihad, 06.10.2014

CPJ Turkey's leaders defend press freedom record but agree to address delegation's concerns, 06.10.2014

Hurriyet Cross-border motion protested in Turkey, 03.10.2014

Diplomat The SCO and Regional Dialogue, 02.10.2014

Nature Resources: Curb vast water use in central Asia, 02.10.2014

Eurasianet Russia-Dependence Roils Central Asia’s Fuel Markets, 02.10.2014

The Diplomat Uzbekistan’s Human Rights Nightmare, 01.10.2014

IBT Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan Vows to Help Kurdistan in War Against Isis, 29.09.2014

RSF Erdogan bodyguards attack two Turkish journalists in New York, 29.09.2014

Khaama Press Afghanistan: Dr. Abdullah threatens to boycott the presidential inauguration, 28.09.2014

Today's Zaman Erdoğan's guards, NY police scuffle during anti-Erdoğan protest, 26.09.2014

CNN ISIS: Everything you need to know about the rise of the 'Islamic State', 26.09.2014

Washington Post Drawing the World Together: Lucky in Afghanistan, 26.09.2014

Forum 18 UZBEKISTAN: Rehabilitation Centre suspended, leaders under criminal investigation, 26.09.2014

The Guardian Thousands jailed in Uzbekistan on politically motivated charges, report says, 26.09.2014

Khaama Islamic State expanding activities in Ghazni, Afghanistan, 26.09.2014

Afghanistan analysts network Karzai struggles against foreign detentions – state releases Taleban?, 25.09.2014

The Diplomat A New U.S. Human Rights Policy Towards Turkmenistan, 24.09.2014

ITAR-TASS MTS returns to Uzbekistan, 24.09.2014

Eurasianet.org Uzbekistan: Prosecutors Deny Holding Gulnara’s Daughter Captive, 23.09.2014

Global Post Uzbekistan leader's daughter probed for corruption, 23.09.2014

RFE/RL Comedy Troupe Too Risque For Uzbek Stage, 20.09.2014

BBC Uzbekistan first daughter Gulnara Karimova hires PR help, 20.09.2014

Khaama Sayyaf calls killers of Afghan forces and Jihadi leaders ‘infidels’, 20.09.2014

IWPR Bishkek Turns Face to Moscow, 19.09.2014

The Guardian Uzbekistan's first daughter 'pictured under house arrest', 16.09.2014

London South East Oxus Gold Loss Widens As It Awaits Outcome Of Uzbekistan Arbitration, 15.09.2014

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