• KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%
  • KGS/USD = 0.01153 0%
  • KZT/USD = 0.00215 0%
  • TJS/USD = 0.09427 0.11%
  • UZS/USD = 0.00008 0%

Viewing results 1 - 6 of 24

Tajikistan Killings Happened in Isolated Area with Volatile History

A part of northern Tajikistan where a series of mysterious killings has happened in the last few months lies in the Ferghana Valley, a fertile, ethnically mixed region that is shared with neighboring Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan and has been prone to border tensions and periodic concerns over religious extremism.Police investigators and journalists have gathered accounts from terrified residents of a man or men dressed in black and trying to break into homes at night. So far, there are no suggestions that the 13 murders reported in and around the Ferghana town of Konibodom since late March are connected to wider social or political fault lines in one of Central Asia’s poorest countries. Still, the killings evoke the volatile history of an isolated area of Tajikistan, separated from the rest of the country by mountains and the sliver-like shape of the northern part of the country, jammed between Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. The biggest portion of the Ferghana Valley lies to the east in Uzbekistan; Tajikistan received its section of it a century ago when rulers in Moscow were divvying up territory among the new Soviet republics. People used to move with relative ease around the valley but the borders hardened over the years, especially after independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. There were numerous border clashes between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan in the Ferghana Valley in recent years, though the two sides are now negotiating. Tajikistan’s part of the Ferghana Valley is in the country’s Sughd region and the main city is Khujand, a transit point on the ancient “Silk Road” trading network that was conquered by Alexander the Great. Konibodom is an agricultural center, known for almonds, cotton and other products – as well as, according to authorities, a rise in the recruitment of young people into extremist groups. “It was noted that terrorist and extremist crimes have increased by 17.5% in the Sughd region, and the majority of such undesirable incidents, including the involvement of young people in extremist parties and movements, have been registered in the cities of Konibodom and Isfara compared to other cities and districts of the country,” the office of Tajik Prosecutor-General Yusuf Rahmon said after he visited Konibodom in April 2023. Concerns that Tajikistan is vulnerable to terrorist recruiters are longstanding. They appear to have been validated by the alleged involvement of several Tajik citizens in a March 22 attack on a Moscow venue that killed about 145 people. The Islamic State group claimed responsibility for the mass killings in Russia. This month, U.S. media reported the arrests in New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles of eight Tajik nationals with possible terror links.The Tajik government has downplayed questions about whether some of its severe internal restrictions, including on expressions of Islamic piethy, might be contributing to radicalization. In 2021, Tajik President Emomali Rahmon made the trip to Konibodom to preside over 21st anniversary commemorations of the accord that ended Tajikistan’s civil war after the Soviet disintegration. He denounced political Islam and recalled the cost...

Men in Black Blamed for Series of Murders in Northern Tajikistan

By Bruce Pannier People in the Konibodom area of northern Tajikistan are locking themselves in their homes when darkness falls. Some are arming themselves. Others have left altogether out of fear. There appears to be a serial killer or killers on the loose. At least 13 people have been murdered in their homes in or near Konibodom since late March, and local police seem baffled as to who is doing this or why. It started with the killing of five members of the Sharipov family in late March. Initially investigators believed the 65-year-old head of the house had killed his wife, daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren, then hanged himself, but they later determined someone broke into the home and the killer hanged the man to make it look like a domestic dispute and suicide. On the night of April 16-17, someone broke into a home in the Gafurjon Ortikov neighborhood of Konibodom and killed the husband and wife who lived there. Police said the bodies of the victims, whom police did not identify, bore the signs of a violent death. The most recent killings happened on the night of May 28-29 in the village of Sanjidzor, outside Konibodom. Mahbuba Ahmedova and her two children were killed in their home and that same night, at a different house, the deputy director of a local school, Zulho Ibragimova, her brother and brother’s wife were killed. Local law enforcement said preliminary evidence showed all six people were strangled. Locals speak about men in black who break into people’s homes at night and kill them. A video was posted, purportedly from a surveillance camera in Konibodom, that shows a person with black clothing and a black hood or mask trying to break into a home. Konibodom resident Mahsuda Kodirova said she and her daughter were sitting in the courtyard of their home a little after 10 in the evening on June 11, when a man in black clothing with a black mask suddenly appeared and approached them. Kadirova said she and her daughter screamed and ran out into the street. When the police arrived, they told Kadirova they had received many similar calls from terrified residents during the previous 48 hours. Understandably, there is panic in Konibodom. Many of the men, especially the young men of Konibodom, are currently migrant laborers in Russia who are supporting their elderly parents, wives, and children back home. The bodies of Mahbuba Ahmendova and her two children were found by neighbors after Ahmedova’s husband had been calling her from Russia and finally called a neighbor to go and check on his family. Konibodom is near the border with Kyrgyzstan and the population of the city is mixed, mostly Tajiks, but many Kyrgyz as well. Most of the victims have been ethnic Tajiks, but Ibragimova, her brother, and her brother’s wife were Kyrgyz. The seeming randomness of the victims puts everyone on edge, at least everyone still there. The Tajik news outlet Asia-Plus sent its reporters to Sanjidzor after the...

Famous Tajik Blogger Subjected to Domestic Violence

In Tajikistan, the husband of famous blogger Rukhshona Rakhmatulloeva has been arrested after she complained of domestic violence, Asia-Plus reports. According to the Dushanbe City Department of Internal Affairs, Rukhshona Rakhmatulloyeva, known on Instagram under the nickname Sofi_1111 where she has more than 400,000 followers, appealed to the authorities through an e-mail in which she complained of beatings and rough treatment by her 32-year-old husband, Umed Rakhmatulloyev. Earlier, followers circulated screenshots of the blogger's post on her page, where she reported that her husband abuses her and threatens her with a knife. In the posts, it is reported that her husband sleeps and sits at home all day while she has to work and support the family. In addition, it is claimed that their children suffer psychologically due to frequent conflicts at home. "The investigation, which included interrogations of the suspect, the victim, and witnesses, confirmed the facts of violence and misunderstanding in the family. The Shohmansur district court sentenced him to administrative arrest for seven days,” the Ministry of Internal Affairs said in a statement. The problem of domestic violence is acute in Tajikistan. According to the Bureau for Human Rights and Rule of Law, 50 to 80% of women and children in the country are subjected to violence. According to the UN, every fifth woman in this country is a victim of domestic violence perpetrated by their husband, mother-in-law, or other family members. Nevertheless, only 1 in 10 women seek help to remedy the situation.

Arrests of People from Tajikistan Who Crossed Border into U.S. Fuel Terrorism Worries

The reported arrests in the United States of eight people from Tajikistan with possible ties to a terror group has renewed concerns about extremism in the Central Asian country, which faced a backlash after the alleged involvement of some of its nationals in a terror attack in Russia in March. U.S. officials have provided little detail on the arrests of the men who had crossed into the United States from Mexico last year, though the development added to tension over the surge in illegal crossings at the southern border. Immigration and border security are a major campaign issue ahead of the U.S. presidential election in November. Patrick Lechleitner, the acting director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also known as ICE, was asked on Wednesday about reports that background checks on the Tajik men failed to turn up any cause for concern. In an interview with the NewsNation network, Lechleitner said another agency, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, had first contact with the men as they crossed the border. “Sometimes there is just no information on individuals. I mean, it’s quite common…  There is nothing,” he said. “There´s no criminal convictions, there’s no threat information or whatever on these individuals, or maybe these individuals are from an area that is particularly of concern, but that pops up later.” ICE was collaborating with the FBI and “we went out and got” the suspects after becoming aware of concerns about them, Lechleitner said. American law enforcement previously warned of the growing threat of terrorism on U.S. soil after the killing of about 145 people in an attack on the Crocus City Hall, an entertainment venue on the outskirts of Moscow, on March 22. The Islamic State group said it carried out the attack, and several people from Tajikistan were among suspects arrested by Russian authorities. “Now increasingly concerning is the potential for a coordinated attack here in the homeland, akin to the ISIS-K attack we saw at the Russia concert hall a couple weeks ago,” FBI Director Christopher Wray told U.S. lawmakers on April 11. ISIS-K is an acronym used for an affiliate of the Islamic State branch that operates in Afghanistan and has sought recruits from Central Asia, particularly Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The Crocus City Hall killings led to a backlash of suspicion against many Tajik migrants in Russia and difficult conditions for those trying to enter Russia in order to work, generating diplomatic tension between Moscow and Dushanbe and worries about the flow of remittances that are a vital part of Tajikistan’s economy. Tajikistan has not commented publicly on the arrests of the Tajik men in the United States. The Tajik government has previously said it is doing what it can to combat terrorism, downplaying questions about whether some of its internal restrictions, including on religious expression, might be contributing to radicalization. U.S. media reports, including from NBC News and ABC News, said the arrests occurred in New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles this past weekend. The reports relied...

Women in Central Asia in Need of Protection from Violence

 Central Asian Countries are seeing a new wave of violence against women and girls, and the fight against their long-standing powerlessness is just beginning. In 2023, the Women, Peace and Security Index (WPS Index), published by the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security and the PRIO Centre on Gender, Peace and Security, found Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan the most dangerous countries in Central Asia for women. Things were deemed slightly better in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan. The challenges faced by women in the region result from a combination of factors: the low number of women in government and law enforcement, women’s lack of financial independence, especially in rural areas, a distorted understanding of traditions across populations, and a mentality in society that often denies or covers up flagrant cases of injustice.   The law is written in blood: the case of Kazakhstan According to WPS experts, Kazakhstan has progressed further than its neighbors toward equality. Still, according to Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, 69 women and seven children died in 2023 in domestic conflicts alone. It is believed that, on average, at least 80 women die every year at the hands of those they live with; every day, the police receive hundreds of calls, while thousands of women need the help of specialized protection and support centers. According to the Prosecutor General, last year 150 women sustained severe injuries and 200 moderate injuries in marital conflicts, with another 4,000 suffering minor bruises. This year, however, marked a turning point for Kazakhstani society – more and more women are recording videos with marks from beatings, posting the videos on social media, and calling on the police to punish their abusers. Even high-profile domestic abusers can now be exposed. The trigger for these changes was the trial of former Nazarbayev-era Minister of the National Economy, Kuandyk Bishimbayev, who beat his wife, Saltanat Nukenova, to death last November. Following a live-streamed trial, this May, Bishimbayev was sentenced to 24 years in prison for her murder. Even during the Bishimbayev trial, Karina Mamash, the wife of a Kazakh diplomat in the UAE, went public with allegations about systematic abuse, calling on the state to help. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs urgently recalled her husband, Embassy Counselor Saken Mamash, who may be fired. Karina is now at home with her children while a criminal case has been opened against her husband. She has since reported threats from her husband's relatives. Also in May, Akmaral Umbetkalieva, a resident of Atyrau, alleged that her ex-husband, Rinat Ibragimov – the akim (mayor) of Makat District in Atyrau Region – had beaten her for eleven years and taken away their children. Ibragimov called the allegations slander. The month before, former Taldykorgan police chief, Marat Kushtybaev was sentenced to eleven years for raping a girl in his office in November 2023. Another headline from April was that a security guard at an Almaty bar who had been convicted of raping a girl at knifepoint would serve eight years in prison. The...

Eight Men from Tajikistan, Suspected of Terror Links, Face Deportation from U.S.

Authorities in the U.S. have arrested eight people from Tajikistan who have possible ties to the Islamic State group, according to U.S. media reports. The men had entered the United States through the southern border with Mexico after background checks failed to turn up any security concerns and were detained this past weekend in New York, Philadelphia and Los Angeles, according to the reports on Tuesday. The reports cited officials who were familiar with the investigation and requested anonymity. Agents from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or ICE, arrested the men on immigration charges after being alerted by the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces of their possible links to the terror group, according to the sources. “At least two of the men crossed the border in the spring of 2023 and one of those men used the CBP One app, created by the Biden administration to allow migrants to book appointments to claim asylum, those officials say, NBC News reported. “The FBI’s Joint Terrorism Taskforce has been aware of a potential terror threat originating in Central Europe and began monitoring these men as part of that investigation, three sources say.” ABC News carried a similar report, saying U.S. authorities had “uncovered derogatory information indicating ties or affiliation” with the Islamic State. “Efforts are underway to deport the suspects as currently authorities have not developed enough evidence to bring any terrorism charges,” ABC said. Several men from Tajikistan were among suspects arrested for the killing of more than 140 people in an attack on the Crocus City Hall, an entertainment venue, on the outskirts of Moscow on March 22. The Islamic State group, which has recruited some people from Central Asia, claimed responsibility. The extremist group has disseminated propaganda in languages including Tajik and Uzbek. Earlier this year, ICE agents arrested an Uzbek man with alleged Islamic State ties after he had been living in the United States for over two years, U.S. officials said. The man, Jovokhir Attoev, was held after crossing the southern border in 2022, but later released. In May 2023, Uzbekistan put out a notice saying Attoev was wanted for his alleged links to the militant organization.

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