Friday, March 06, 2009

Forum 18: Uzbekistan (Direct Post)

6 March 2009
Natalya Kadyrova is one of several Protestant Christians known to Forum 18News Service to have been denied the exit visas Uzbek citizens need before they can leave their own country, apparently as punishment for their religious activity. The wife of a pastor of a Tashkent Protestant church,Kadyrova has already been fined for her involvement with her church.Muslims and Jehovah's Witnesses have told Forum 18 that their adherents have faced exit visa denials in the recent past. Human rights defenders are among others who face similar problems. However, Saken Kojahmetov, head of the Department of Entry and Exit at the Interior Ministry's Department of Entry, Exit and Legalisation of Citizenship in Tashkent, denied this to Forum 18. "We don't obstruct Uzbek citizens from travelling freely," he claimed. Asked why a number of religious believers cannot get exit visas,he responded: "If some people are saying this, let them come to me and raise their case and we will resolve it."

1 comment:

bloggulator said...

Uzbekistan has one of the world's most vicious and brutal regimes, presided over by extremist dictator Islam Karimov. Torture is par for the course - one favorite method (terminal of course) is to throw dissidents into a tank of boiling water.... no doubt inspired by some of the more extreme content in the "Kubark" manual set, the standard interrogation reference used by US Central Intelligence. Uzbekistan is curently an ally of the US/UK in the so-called "war on terror". I guess that figures.