Uzbekistan: Arrested Uzbek journalist Naumov free
Fergana learned that the journalist Sergey Naumov is released. According to Fergana’s sources, Mr. Naumov is yet to receive his passport back. No communication was possible with either him or his lawyer.
Background: Mr. Naumov, who lives in Urgench in western Uzbekistan and writes for international mass media, was charged with hooliganism and sentenced to serve a 12-day arrest for an administrative delinquency. The trial was held with numerous violations of procedures and several lawyers believe the court hearing and the subsequent verdict were “requested.”
Police took Mr. Naumov in custody on 21 Sep 2013, and his friends and family were unable to learn his whereabouts for three days. Having learned the absurd charge pressed against him, groping an unknown woman’s breasts, many were concerned the trumped up charge was an excuse to detain him and then level a more serious charge—human trafficking.
Fergana continues monitoring the matter.