Islamist organization activists convicted in Tajikistan

Interfax-Religion | 2014-06-04


Dushanbe, June 4, Interfax – A court in the Sughd Region in northern Tajikistan has passed a guilty verdict on six Tajik activists of the extremist religious group Jamaat Ansarullah, the Tajik Supreme Court press service said on Wednesday.

Tajik authorities accused the group of staging an explosion near a police department building in 2010.

The defendants were sentenced from nine to 9.5 years in a high security penitentiary.

Another defendant, 38-year-old Furkat Barotov, was acknowledged as a person who was unaffiliated to Jamaat Ansarullah but failed to inform the police about membership of his acquaintances in that group. He was convicted on the counts of "failure to report a crime" and sentenced to one year in a general penitentiary.

Jamaat Ansarullah became known in September 2010 when a GAZ-24 car carrying explosives rammed the building of the Interior Ministry organized crime department in the second largest city of Tajikistan – Khujand, the Sughd Region. The suicide bomber attack killed two police officers and injured about 20.

The Tajik authorities have branded Jamaat Ansarullah as a wing of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, which is active in the Fergana Valley shared by Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan. Suspected members of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan are regularly caught in the Sughd Region.

The Interior Ministry said 48 members of terrorist organizations, among them 31 member of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan and 17 members of Jamaat Ansarullah, were exposed and detained last year.

The Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, which has links to al-Qaeda, calls for overthrowing secular governments in Central Asia and transforming the republics into Islamic states. Movement activities have been recognized as terrorist by the United States, Russia and some other countries.


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