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Uzbekistan: Arrest of Human Rights Defender Uktam Pardayev
Letter by William Gomes Salem-News.com
Uktam Pardayev's problems stated after a visit to his house by officials from the American Embassy about his Human Rights work.
Uzbekistan map: frontlinedefenders.org
(SALEM) - An Uzbek human rights defender, Mr Uktam Pardayev, was taken recently by police and those officials are not cooperating with Mr. Pardayev's family.
Uktam Pardayev is the Chairperson of the Independent Human Rights Society of Uzbekistan (IHRSU) in the region of Djizak.
He was at a service station at 10:00 a.m. on 30 September 2012 when he was approached by armed police. The officers beat him on the spot and placed Mr. Pardeyev under arrest, taking him from the scene. Additional police officers were called to the scene and minutes later, four more uniformed officers arrived in a second car. Mr. Uktam was forced into a white Zhiguli car and driven off in an unknown direction.
Since the time of his arrest, Uktam Pardayev’s relatives have been refused information about the human rights hi’s whereabouts.
They took their case to the city police stations, local office of the Department of Interior Affairs, and the national security office.
Uktam Pardayev’s brother handed out written requests to inform them about his brother’s whereabouts, which was accepted by the Department of Interior Affairs, but refused by the national security office.
President Islam Karimov
Office of the President
43 Uzbekistan Avenue
I am William Nicholas Gomes, Human Rights Ambassador for Salem-News.com.
I came to know about the situation from Front Line Defenders.
On 30 September 2012, at approximately 10:00 am, human rights defender Mr Uktam Pardayev was beaten and arrested at a service station in the town of Djizak by several armed policemen. Since his arrest, relatives of the human rights defender have been denied any information regarding his situation or whereabouts. Uktam Pardayev is the Chairperson of the Independent Human Rights Society of Uzbekistan (IHRSU) in the region of Djizak.
On 30 September Uktam Pardayev entered a service station on Tashkentskaya street in the town of Djizak, in his car, when three policemen who were present suddenly ordered that the station be closed and told the human rights defender not to move. They refused to explain to Uktam Pardayev the reason for this order, and additional police officers were called in. Minutes later, four more uniformed policemen arrived in a second car, after which Uktam Pardayev was beaten, forced into a white Zhiguli car and driven off in an unknown direction.
Since the time of his arrest, Uktam Pardayev’s relatives have been refused information about the human rights defender’s whereabouts. They have visited the city police stations, the local office of the Department of Interior Affairs, and the national security office. Uktam Pardayev’s brother handed out written requests to inform them about his brother’s whereabouts, which was accepted by the Department of Interior Affairs, but refused by the national security office.
Calls by Uktam Pardayev’s relatives to police officers have not been answered. Only at midnight on 1 October was Uktam Pardayev’s brother able to connect with the district policeman of Khandzor district, who told him not to bother and that nothing bad was going to happen to the human rights defender. Front Line Defenders tried to talk to the same policeman, but after hearing the name Uktam Pardayev, the policeman hung the phone. In a phone call to the Djizak prosecutor’s office, the prosecutor’s assistant answered that they would find out what is happening.
In mid-September 2012, Uktam Pardayev was followed by a white Daewoo Nexia car by persons in plainclothes. On 8 September, neighbours of the human rights defender were visited by officers from the Department of Internal Affairs and questioned about Uktam Pardeyev’s movements and contacts. On 30 August, Uktam Pardayev’s house was visited by police officers, who in a later phone call reported having been sent by the Department of Interior Affairs, and the human rights defender’s mother was asked for his phone number.
Uktam Pardayev has previously indicated he believes these measures started after a visit to his house by officials from the American Embassy about his Human Rights work.
In addition to this, Uktam Pardayev has been continuously denied an exit visa since the start of his application in December 2011. During an interview for his application on 25 January 2012, he was questioned by an unnamed security official about the type of human rights activities he was involved in. On 11 June 2012, the Djizak Inter-District Court refused to consider Uktam Pardayev’s appeal against the denial of his visa application on the ground that it was outside of the court’s jurisdiction. On 29 August 2012, the Regional Court of Djizak, overruled the decision of the court of first instance and sent the appeal back to be heard by the court.
I believe Uktam Pardayev’s arrest is part of an ongoing pattern of harassment against the human rights defender.
I call upon the authorities of Uzbekistan to:
1. Immediately reveal the exact whereabouts of human rights defender Uktam Pardayev, and release him immediately and unconditionally, as it is believed that he has been targeted as a result of his legitimate human rights activities;
2. Ensure that the treatment of Uktam Pardayev, while in detention, adheres to all those conditions set out in the ‘Basic Principles for Treatment of Prisoners, adopted by General Assembly resolution 45/111 of 14 December 1990′, and grant him immediate and unfettered access to his family and legal representatives;
3. Take measures to ensure that all human rights defenders in Uzbekistan, while carrying out their legitimate work in the defence of human rights, are able to operate without fear of reprisals and free of all restrictions and reprisals.
William Nicholas Gomes
Human Rights Ambassador for Salem-News.com
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Salem-News.com Human Rights Ambassador William Nicholas Gomes is a Bangladeshi journalist, human rights activist and author was born on 25 December, 1985 in Dhaka. As an investigative journalist he wrote widely for leading European and Asian media outlets.
He is also active in advocating for free and independent media and journalists’ rights, and is part of the free media movement, Global Independent Media Center – an activist media network for the creation of radical, accurate, and passionate telling of the truth. He worked for Italian news agency Asianews.it from year 2009 to 2011, on that time he was accredited as a free lance journalist by the press information department of Bangladesh. During this time he has reported a notable numbers of reports for the news agency which were translated into Chinese and Italian and quoted by notable number of new outlets all over the world.He, ideologically, identifies himself deeply attached with anarchism. His political views are often characterized as “leftist” or “left-wing,” and he has described himself as an individualist anarchist.
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