23 Nov 2017 13:52

Almost 1,900 Tajik terrorists wanted by Interpol - Dushanbe

DUSHANBE. Nov 23 (Interfax) - The Interpol National Central Bureau for Tajikistan has put 2,528 citizens of Tajikistan on the list of internationally wanted fugitives, bureau chief Abdugaffor Azizov told the Jumhuriyat government newspaper.

"The international search for those individuals was started on the grounds of grave and extremely grave felonies, such as murders, robberies, fraud, terrorism, and extremist crimes. As many as 1,873 of them are affiliated with terrorist and extremist groups. Thirty-five are active members of the IRPT terrorist and extremist organization [the Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan, outlawed in September 2016]. They are accused of terrorist and extremist crimes under Articles 179 [terrorism], 186 [banditry], 187 [establishment of a criminal group], 185 [establishment of an armed group], 306 [power grab], 307 [public appeals for extremism], and 313 [armed revolt] of the Tajik Criminal Code," Azizov said.

IRPT members have perpetrated a total of 1,610 crimes, he said.

The Interpol National Central Bureau for Tajikistan is closely interacting with colleagues in other countries, he said. "The interaction has helped extradite six active members of the IRPT terrorist organization from European countries to Tajikistan," Azizov said.

"A member of the IRPT Political Council, Shohnaimi Karimi, a.k.a. Mirzorahim Kuzov, was recently detained in Greece trying to depart for Iran. His extradition to the Tajik authorities is under consideration," he said.

Tajik opposition activist Kuzov was detained by the Greek police at Athens Airport on October 9 on his way back from Warsaw, where he took part in a human rights conference organized by the OSCE/ODIHR.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) asked Greece not to extradite Kuzov to Dushanbe. The organization believes that the opposition activist "may be tortured or subjected to cruel treatment" in his home country.

The Tajik authorities accused Kuzov of "public appeals for extremism and establishment of an extremist group."

The Tajik Supreme Court branded IRPT extremist and outlawed its activity in late September 2015 after the party was found guilty of involvement in the coup attempt staged by former Deputy Defense Minister Abduhalim Nazarzoda.

In June 2016, the Tajik Supreme Court sentenced 13 IRPT leaders to years in prison, and two of them received life sentences.