14 december 2017

Central Asia news

Russia’s migrant phobia primarily a political, ideological phenomenon: Sergei Abashin

Russia’s migrant phobia primarily a political, ideological phenomenon: Sergei Abashin

10.11.2017 00:08 msk Analytics Politics Migration Interview Central Asia Russia

On the eve of the centenary of the October Revolution, the Central Asian Analytical Network (CAAN) is returning to the question surrounding the administrative and territorial demarcation of Central Asia. In a conversation with the political scientist Raffael Sattarov, well-known Russian historian, ethnologist and anthropologist, Sergei Abashin, will shed light on some dark corners of the region’s Soviet period and reflect upon current questions that define the relationship between Russia and the Central Asian countries, most prominently nationalism, labour migration and post-Soviet integration.

What do we know about alleged NYC Halloween terrorist Sayfullo Saipov

What do we know about alleged NYC Halloween terrorist Sayfullo Saipov

02.11.2017 21:27 msk Analytics Politics Religious life Migration Uzbekistan

On 31 October, a terrorist attack ruined Halloween in New York. A 29-year-old man at the wheel of a rented truck drove at high speed onto a bike path running along the Hudson River, driving several blocks while crushing random passers-by and bicyclists. Then the pickup truck crashed into a school bus transporting children with disabilities, injuring several bus passengers. The culprit, with cries of "Allahu Akbar!", jumped from the truck, holding a paintball gun and a pellet gun in his hands. Arriving at the scene, police opened fire on him, wounding him in the abdomen. The suspect was hospitalised, underwent an operation, and afterwards interrogated. In all, eight were killed and 15 injured as a result of the terrorist attack.

«To people like you I can say that I’m Uzbek»

«To people like you I can say that I’m Uzbek»

03.10.2017 16:09 msk Politics Migration Afghanistan Uzbekistan

Although Uzbek tribes had lived in Afghanistan for centuries, Soviet Uzbeks’ ethnic kin in Afghanistan weren’t part of their national narrative. The Afghan Uzbeks’ history was not studied properly in Soviet Uzbekistan, nor was it mentioned in our textbooks. At school, we were taught the history of Uzbekistan within the Soviet republic’s territory, and the history of Uzbek people stopped at the Soviet borders. The Soviet media didn’t mention Afghanistan’s Uzbeks. Later I discovered that they weren’t part of the Afghan narrative or curriculum either. The Uzbeks of Afghanistan were some kind of a taboo subject in the two neighbouring countries. But history they had.

Human rights defender about forced deportation of Uzbeks

Human rights defender about forced deportation of Uzbeks

21.09.2017 09:57 msk Human Rights Politics Migration Russia Uzbekistan

Human rights defender Bahrom Khamroev was born in Uzbekistan, but since 1992 he lives in Russia. Working for the Moscow-based Memorial Centre Bahrom oversees issues related to the protection of the civil rights of fellow countrymen and migrant workers who have arrived from other Central Asia republics in Russia, in particular, trying to prevent them from forced deportation of them to their homeland.

Dictator’s relatives. Nephew of late Islam Karimov granted refugee status in Ukraine escaping extradition to Uzbekistan

Dictator’s relatives. Nephew of late Islam Karimov granted refugee status in Ukraine escaping extradition to Uzbekistan

30.06.2017 15:51 msk Human Rights Politics Migration Russia Uzbekistan

The Office of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine denied the extradition request of Akbar Abdullaev by Uzbekistan, where he is accused of a number of economic crimes, his lawyer Oliver Wallash informed Fergana about it on 27 June. Akbar Abdullaev, 34, the son of Tamara Sobirova, the sister of the former first lady of Uzbekistan Tatyana Karimova, had already conviction in the past. “The extradition was denied for the reason of refugee status granted,” Oliver Wallash said in a telephone interview.

Russia, Central Asia, migrants. Where and how extremism threatens?

Russia, Central Asia, migrants. Where and how extremism threatens?

25.05.2017 12:54 msk Analytics Politics Religious life Migration Central Asia Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan Russia Tajikistan Turkmenistan Uzbekistan

The recent terror act in the St. Petersburg metro on 3 April, in the organisation of which Russian special services suspect people from Central Asia, exacerbated issues related to migration processes from the countries of this region to Russia. Last week in Moscow, the Sakharov Center jointly with the Yegor Gaidar Foundation organised a discussion during which experts discussed whether there is any ground to say that it is among the migrants that recruitment of terrorists takes place, and if so, what causes migrants to join the ranks of radical Islamists, what role is played by large-scale corruption, typical of most Central Asian countries, and whether it is possible to oppose it.

Suspected in terrorism – emerging portraits from Central Asia

Suspected in terrorism – emerging portraits from Central Asia

28.04.2017 15:58 msk Analytics Ferghana Valley Human Rights Politics Religious life Migration Kyrgyzstan Russia Uzbekistan

Brothers and neighbours speak about Rakhmat Akilov in Uzbekistan and Abror and Akram Azimov brothers in Kyrgyzstan. A good childhood and obedience, law-abiding behaviour, positive reputation in the neighbourhood, diligence – such testimonials would make a decent citizen, but not terrorist.

Uzbekistan: Neighbours of «terrorist of Stockholm» say suspect far from extremism

Uzbekistan: Neighbours of «terrorist of Stockholm» say suspect far from extremism

15.04.2017 10:03 msk Human Rights Politics Religious life Migration Uzbekistan

A reporter of Fergana was able to visit a mahalla (neighbourhood) in Samarkand where the relatives of Rakhmat Akilov live. Swedish police arrested Mr Akilov as the main suspect of a terrorist act in Stockholm early April. Residents of Mr Akilov’s neighbourhood in Samarkand maintain that he was “distanced from politics and ideas of religious extremism.” No one saw him observing religious rites. Like the rest of the majority of Muslims in Uzbekistan, he would maintain only the so-called “household Islam,” and behaved like any other law-abiding person.

Human trafficking and IS followers in Central Asia

Human trafficking and IS followers in Central Asia

31.01.2017 09:21 msk Human Rights Politics Migration Central Asia Afghanistan Kazakhstan Kyrgyzstan Russia Tajikistan Turkey, Republic of Uzbekistan

Neo-patrimonial regimes have been established in Central Asian countries following the implosion of the Soviet Union. The new elites divided entire economies and “sweet-spot” government positions between “bosses” and their “vassals.” Meanwhile, the rest of the society, who are excluded from such networks, has no chances to secure good jobs, to peacefully and beneficially conduct business and remains impoverished. Such systems of management create fertile grounds for booming human trafficking and joining the ranks of IS, Kazakh political scientist Talgat Mamyrayymov says in the article he authored below.

Uzbek officials: “Our prisons are most progressive, mass media are most democratic; no torture, because it is prohibited!”

Uzbek officials: “Our prisons are most progressive, mass media are most democratic; no torture, because it is prohibited!”

20.07.2015 10:40 msk Human Rights Politics Religious life Migration Internet Uzbekistan

Every five years starting in 1996, Uzbekistan delivers a report before UN Committee for Human Rights on the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. There are very few people aware of this document in Uzbekistan, save the officials and a handful of pro-government NGOs like the Committee of Women of Uzbekistan or the Ijtimoiy Fikr Sociology Centre, which characterise themselves as independent for some reason. Public hearings of another report took place at the Wilson Pallaise in Geneva, Switzerland on July 8-9, where an delegation from Uzbekistan responded to questions 18 members of the committee had to ask them.

Uzbeks returning from Norway tortured, bashed on TV and convicted for extremism

Uzbeks returning from Norway tortured, bashed on TV and convicted for extremism

26.12.2014 15:00 msk Analytics Human Rights Migration Central Asia Uzbekistan

Two days ago, several more innocent people were convicted for alleged anti-state activities and religious extremism in Uzbekistan. It is a very sad recurring event in this Central Asian country. Human rights activists almost daily toll the bells on torture in pretrial detention facilities and unfair courts. However, this particular case is no routine. The only “crime” the convicts in question committed was obtaining asylum in Norway. Some have only lived and worked there for some time.

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.

Birdamlik Opposition Movement allocates $16K to initiate “velvet revolution” in Uzbekistan

Birdamlik Opposition Movement allocates $16K to initiate “velvet revolution” in Uzbekistan

04.09.2013 15:16 msk Human Rights Politics Migration Uzbekistan

«The Birdamlik Popular Democratic Movement urges you, esteemed Uzbek citizens living in Uzbekistan and abroad, to [join] a struggle for social justices and supremacy of law for the sake of humans’ financial wellbeing, of real life and the bright days to come». Bakhodir Choriyev, an Uzbek oppositionist living in the USA, chose these words to begin his appeal, which he and his activists circulated late last week. This is, therefore, the declaration of the first phase of a so-called “color revolution,” which the movement, known for the protests it hosted in Uzbekistan and the USA, dubbed “OSh” or Ommaviy Shodlik (Mass Jubilee.)

Nadejda Atayeva: Seven-year imprisonment sentence and property confiscation for human rights activism

Nadejda Atayeva: Seven-year imprisonment sentence and property confiscation for human rights activism

29.08.2013 08:45 msk Analytics Human Rights Business Politics Migration Interview Uzbekistan

On 22 Jul 2013, head of the France-based Human Rights in Central Asia Association announced on her Facebook page: “On 19 July 2013, the Tashkent City Criminal Court sentenced me, in absentia, to seven years in prison and to confiscate my property. The trial took place without my lawyer or myself. I was accused of embezzling entrusted property. The testimony of 69 witnesses, who had also been convicted and who had worked for my father, established my guilt. No expert’s conclusion on the amount of damages was made available. This decision of the Uzbek “justice” was preceded by online and e-mail threats, provocations and numerous extradition requests. Well, we live on!”

Uzbekistan: Want to marry? See a doctor!

Uzbekistan: Want to marry? See a doctor!

25.07.2013 22:16 msk Human Rights Migration Russia Uzbekistan

As is well known, young and able-bodied men from Uzbekistan travel to Russia seeking employment en mass every year. Their absence in the country has somewhat impacted ceremonies of one of the most traditional Uzbek rituals—weddings. For example, for the last several years, young couples willing to join hands and hearts are obliged to pass a thorough medical examination: an HIV test, an examination by a psychiatrist, a drug test, and get a chest X-Ray. If in 2009 and since, many chose to simply bribe doctors for “good results” in order to quickly register the marriage, nowadays, many brides and grooms are serious about these issues and treat a medical examination as an insurance against potential future problems. Brides’ relatives are especially prone to insisting on a medical test of future grooms.

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