Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Tajikistan Claims Detention of 118 Extremists

Security services in Tajikistan detained 118 members of alleged terrorist and extremist groups last year, deputy interior minister said Monday. Those held allegedly contributed to 91 serious crimes, including the organization of militant groups and criminal gangs on the territory of the Central Asian state, Deputy Interior Minister Abdurakhmon Buzmakov said. He said that they included members of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and Jamaat Ansarullah militant groups as well as followers of the insurgent commander Mullo Abdullo, who was killed during a clash with government forces in 2011. The deputy minister said that the number of registered crimes in Tajikistan increased by 10.5 percent in 2013 compared to the year before, to more than 18,300, including 3,100 serious offences. Trials against people suspected of belonging to extremist religious groups in Tajikistan are generally held behind closed doors, making it almost impossible to verify the legitimacy of the charges against them. The country's highly authoritarian government has pursued broad crackdowns against devout Muslims over fears they pose a risk to stability. The US Commission on International Religious Freedom noted in its 2013 report that Tajikistan is characterized by "systematic, ongoing, and egregious violations of freedom of religion."


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