Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

SOS = Call For Help Or Punishable Offense? Jail In Kyrgyzstan!

Posted by Info on 28/09/2010

A court in southern Kyrgyzstan has sentenced two ethnic Uzbeks to three years in prison for writing “SOS” on the gate of a private home during June’s deadly clashes between the region’s Uzbeks and Kyrgyz.

The Kara-Suu District Court ruled that Uktomjan Ahmatjanov and Islamjan Husanov had incited interethnic conflict by spreading rumors that troops from neighboring Uzbekistan would come to the aid of local Uzbeks and by painting the SOS sign to help these forces – actions the court deemed to have turned Uzbeks against Kyrgyz.
The men were accused of committing their crime on June 12, when many Uzbek neighborhoods had already barricaded themselves against armed mobs.

The latest court case is not the first time that the SOS signs, still visible in some Uzbek neighborhoods in the south, have been cited as incriminating evidence.

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