Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Uzbekistan Jailed Political Opponents,routinely tortured prisoners In 09

Posted by Info on 12/03/2010

Uzbekistan jailed political opponents, routinely tortured prisoners and committed other serious rights violations last year, effectively making it Central Asia’s most authoritarian state

In its annual survey of human rights in 194 countries, the U.S. State Department used considerably stronger language to describe abuses in Uzbekistan:
“The government continued to commit serious abuses and authorities restricted political and civil liberties….Law enforcement and security officers routinely beat and otherwise mistreated detainees to obtain confessions or incriminating information.”
“Torture and abuse were common in prisons… Family members reported several deaths in custody of prisoners who were serving sentences on charges related to religious extremism”.

President Islam Karimov, in power for 20 years, tolerates no dissent and public criticism of his rule is taboo.

Over years, Uzbekistan has intensified its campaign against independent media, driving Western outlets out of the country and putting pressure on local reporters. Reuters has been covering Uzbekistan from neighboring Kazakhstan since 2008.

Police and security services subjected print and broadcast journalists to arrest, harassment, intimidation, and violence, as well as to bureaucratic restrictions on their activity.”

Turkmenistan is another country it classified as “authorititarian” but with “modest improvements in some areas”

In Kazakhstan, the region’s top oil producer where the United States is the biggest foreign investor, the report said key problems included severe limits on people’s right to change their government, and restrictions on freedom of speech.

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