Tajik major drug dealer gets lengthy jail term

Tajik major drug dealer Nourullo Rahimov, known in the criminal world as “Kaftarboz” (pigeon breeder), has been sentenced to 23 years in prison for smuggling and selling more than 13 kilograms of narcotic drugs, Drug Control Agency (DCA) Director Habibullo Vohidzoda told reporters in Dushanbe on August 5.

According to him, Rahimov’s accomplices have also got lengthy jail terms: two of them – citizens of Tajikistan – have bene sentenced to 16 years in prison each and one Afghan national has been sentenced to 18 years in prison.

In March this year, Tajik law enforcement agencies announced the arrest of several members of the organized criminal group. The ringleader is the 50-year-old resident of Dushanbe Nourullo Rahimov and the group members included Tajik nationals Saadi Soqiyev, Bahrullo Minbayev (he has a criminal record for murder) and Asroriddin Zhobbirov (he has a criminal record for drug trafficking) as well as Afghan national Rasoul Kabir, who was temporarily residing in Dushanbe.

Tajik drug control kingpin noted at a news conference on August 5 that one of members of those organized criminal group has been on the international wanted list.

According to DCA director, Makarov pistol was confiscated from Nourullo Rahimov.

Vohidzoda also noted that 26 criminal groups (totaling 47 people) and three organized criminal groups (totaling six people) had been broken up over the first six months of this year.

Source: Asia-Plus

Two cases of fraud with a particularly large amount have been committed

A 43-year-old man from the capital, Dushanbe, filed a complaint with the State Security Service-1 in Firdavsi district, that a 30-year-old man from Dushanbe deceived him and took 753 thousand US dollars from him, promising to get materials from abroad for the development of his business. makes available the use of Chilim, but the said person has not fulfilled his vada yet.

?at the same time, during the operation-search activities by police officers, a 37-year-old man from Dushanbe city was arrested on suspicion of fraud.

Namely, in October 2019, he fraudulently entered the trust of a 37-year-old man living in the capital, took 60 thousand US dollars from him, and promised to provide several types of products from abroad for the development of his business in a short period of time, but the money he received was for the benefit of He has spent his personal money and has not returned it yet.

The General Prosecutor’s Office of the Republic of Tajikistan has opened a criminal case against the suspect under Article 247, Part 4, Clause “b”, and the investigation is ongoing.

Source: Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan

Arrest of minors for the crime of theft

A 36-year-old man from Dushanbe filed a complaint with the Police Department in I. Somoni district, that on July 30, 2022, at approximately 03:00, unknown persons secretly entered his store, located on Dehlavii street of the capital, and They secretly took 11,000 somoni and the base of the surveillance camera from there and disappeared from the scene.

During the operative-search activities, 14- and 15-year-old minors from the residents of Varzob district were arrested by the police officers as suspects in the crime of theft.

The investigation into this incident is ongoing.

Source: Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan

Drug trafficking increases in Tajikistan after Talban’s return to power in Afghanistan, says Tajik drug control kingpin

In a report released at a news conference in Dushanbe, Director of the Drug Control Agency under the President of Tajikistan (DCA), Habibullo Vohidzoda, revealed on August 5 that 2,578.145 kilograms of narcotic drugs have been seized in Tajikistan over the first six months of this year, which is 52 percent or 892.5 kilograms more than in the same period last year.

Tajik drug control kingpin notes that increase in drug trafficking in the country has resulted from increasing trafficking of drugs out of neighboring Afghanistan.

“After coming to power in Afghanistan, the Taliban stated that they intend to ban the cultivation of narcotics in Afghanistan, the world's biggest opium producer, as well as toughen punishment for drug trafficking. But in reality, this is not visible,” DCA chief said.

Recall, the Taliban in April announced a ban on the cultivation of narcotics in Afghanistan. All Afghans were reportedly informed that cultivation of poppy has been strictly prohibited across the country. “If anyone violates the decree, the crop will be destroyed immediately and the violator will be treated according to the Sharia law," an order from the Taliban's supreme leader Haibatullah Akhundzada, announced at a news conference by the Ministry of Interior in Kabul, said, according to CNN.

Meanwhile, more than 3,000 kilograms of Afghan drugs have reportedly been seized in Tajikistan since August last year, when the Taliban returned to power in Afghanistan.

For the whole of 2020, little more than 1,000 Afghan narcotic drugs were seized in Tajikistan.

Source: Asia-Plus

The start of the open individual-team competition for the “Cup of Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs”

On August 4, 2022, dedicated to the celebration of the 31st anniversary of the State Independence of the Republic of Tajikistan, the Department of the Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs organized an open personal-team competition between the Head Directorate and the departments of the internal affairs bodies in the sports of small football, volleyball and national wrestling to find " The Cup of Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs" was launched.

Before the competitions, the opening ceremony of these competitions was held, and the leadership of the Department of Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs emphasized the significant contribution of soldiers and officers to the achievement of state independence and strengthening of the constitutional structure.

The purpose of this competition is further improvement of the physical training of personnel, involvement of employees in regular physical training, sports and promotion of a healthy lifestyle.

After the live performance of the National Anthem, the competition was declared officially open.

It should be noted that on the first day of the competition, a number of teams played their first matches on the small fields of the 3502nd military unit of the Internal Troops Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan. It should be noted that the playgrounds are built with high quality and are suitable for various competitions. Of course, this is primarily due to the support and serious attention of the Minister of Internal Affairs, Colonel-General of Police Rahimzoda Ramazan Ham, to the military units and the entire Directorate of the Internal Forces of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, to sports and a healthy lifestyle.

The competitions will be held in round-robin format, and the teams will play each other in two 25-minute halves. Of course, the competition will be held according to IFA rules. All the teams have already been divided into four groups, and after the group matches, the top two teams of the group will go to the final stage.

In the second round, the competition was held in Olympic style, that is, in the event of a tie, 3 6-meter shots are awarded. Other planned competitions will be held according to international laws and regulations.

As we mentioned above, the purpose of the tournament is to further improve the physical training of the personnel, to attract as many employees as possible to sports activities, to maintain their health in good condition, to promote a healthy lifestyle, as well as to develop and promote the sports of football, volleyball and national wrestling among employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

Competitions within the framework of this competition will continue until September 6, and the winners will be presented with cups, medals, certificates and souvenirs by the leadership of the Department of Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

Source: Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Tajikistan

Tajikistan Quarterly Household Food Security and Market Update (April-June 2022)

Main findings

The food security assessment carried out in May 2022 classified 21 percent of households in Tajikistan as food insecure. Compared to the assessment carried out in August 2021, the proportion of food secure households declined by 6 percentage points in May 2022.

Compared to August 2021, larger proportion of households were adopting livelihood eroding coping strategies to access food, such as reducing the cost of healthcare and education as well as spending savings to buy food were practiced the most. 35 percent of the households reported income decline compared to same period last year. The proportion of households reporting significant decline in income increased in May 2022 compared to August 2021 by 5 percentage points.

Among the households reporting income decline, 59 percent reported that it would have a significant impact in their ability to access food.

There was an increase by 10 percentage points in the proportion of households expressing concerns about their general well-being compared to August 2021 assessment. The main concern expressed was the rising food prices.

Prices of some key commodities have continued to rise in the period between AprilJune 2022 including wheat flour and edible oils. Consequently, the cost of the monthly household food basket was found to be highest in June in 2022 at 1714 TJS/month.

An analysis of purchasing capacity of skilled and unskilled daily wage labourers showed that skilled labourers earned slightly more than what is needed to have at least one household monthly food basket while the unskilled wage labourers were unable to afford a single food basket.

Source: World Food Programme

The Agency on Statistics held a press conference

On August 4, 2022, a press conference was held at the Agency on Statistics under the President of the Republic of Tajikistan with representatives of the media.

The press conference was attended by representatives of NIAT "Khovar", agencies "Sputnik Russia", "Avesto", TV channels - "Tourism and Crafts", "Safina", "Jahonnamo", TRK "Mir", radio stations - "Khovar", " Radioi Tojikiston”, “Sadoi Dushanbe”, “Ovozi Tojik”, “Ozod?”, newspapers and magazines “Khumhuriyat”, “Sadoi Mardum”, “Narodnaya Gazeta”, “Javononi Tojikiston”, “Minbari Khalq”, “Omuzgor”, “ Khalq ovozi”, “Payk” and the website of “Radiotoj”.

Before the start of the press conference, journalists were provided with press releases on the socio-economic situation of the Republic of Tajikistan (in Tajik and Russian), on the demographic situation of the Republic of Tajikistan (in Tajik and Russian), and on the activities of the state statistics bodies of the Republic of Tajikistan in the first half of 2022 of the year.

The press conference was opened by the Director of the Agency on Statistics, Ms. Hasanzoda Gulnora, who presented the results of the activities of the statistical bodies for the first half of 2022 and further tasks for 2022.

Then the Director of the Agency, Deputy Directors of the Agency, heads of sectoral departments and departments of the central office of the Agency on Statistics answered the journalists' questions.

The main questions of journalists were on the following topics:

- method for determining the 10 millionth inhabitant of Tajikistan;

- household budget;

- the cost of the consumer basket in the Republic of Tajikistan;

- export and import in the Republic of Tajikistan;

- food prices; - the number of unemployed in the republic;

- foreign investments in the Republic of Tajikistan, etc.

The questions of representatives of the media about the activities in the field of statistics were given exhaustive answers by the leadership of the Agency.

Source: Statistical agency under the President of the Republic of Tajikistan

Put To The Test: The Challenges Of Higher Education In Tajikistan And Uzbekistan

Around half of Central Asia's population is under 30 years old. This means the demand for education is high. Having a university diploma is associated with a chance for a better-paying, white-collar job. However, professions that are popular with students do not necessarily match the needs of the labor market.

The region inherited its public higher education system from the Soviet era. A diverse range of privately owned universities emerged during the independence years. Some of them offer quality Western-style education, although their tuition fees can be too expensive for most ordinary Central Asians. Some have been nothing more than "diploma factories" used to obtain degrees rather than knowledge.

Across the region, universities are struggling with funding and shortages of academic staff. This, along with high unemployment and low wages, forces young people to go abroad for education and work.

In a live discussion on August 4, I spoke with Nafisabonu Urinkhojaeva, a university student in Tajikistan, and Niginakhon Saida, a private university instructor from Uzbekistan, about the quality of higher education in their countries, competition for places at universities, and brain drain.

Key takeaways:

Nafisabonu Urinkhojaeva (Tajikistan): "Before I enrolled into my university, I was offered a presidential quota to study for free. But I would have to work for three years in Tajikistan after graduation. I didn't know what kind of job [the government] would provide me with in the future. Would I like it or not? They find a job for you, and you have to work there. That's why I chose to pay for my studies. As soon as I finish, I will go to study abroad.

"I wish we could choose our classes ourselves, maybe, to choose our professors. Also, I wish we had a better student life in our university."

Niginakhon Saida (Uzbekistan): "I'm still struggling to find my own style of teaching. I try to [have] more student-oriented classes where I would like them to engage more in discussion and learn from each other. But it's hard to dismantle this class hierarchy where they see a teacher as someone with power. They expect you to tell them what to do. This is one thing I struggle with.

"I also try to get rid of all tests and other [assignments] where it would require memorizing skills and focus on writing papers instead, which would involve critical thinking and analysis. But what I observe is that schools don't prepare students for these kinds of tasks. Every semester, I dedicate one class to teach students how to cite, paraphrase, avoid plagiarism, etc. Because in their mind, if they dug it out on the Internet and found some materials, it's their work.

"I believe that in Uzbekistan the hardest part of getting a higher education is the entrance exam. That's it. It doesn't matter what you do afterward. As long as you keep going to university, you keep paying fees, you will graduate. It doesn't matter whether you are studying well. When I was graduating, I taught at my public university as part of an internship. I had to teach 30 students who were majoring in English. I saw that half of the class could not speak any English. So I believe that entrance exams should be not that difficult, but studying should be harder and more demanding."

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.

Religious Cleric In Restive Tajik Region Gets Five Years On Extremism Charges

KHORUGH, Tajikistan -- A noted religious cleric in Tajikistan's restive Gorno-Badakhshan Region (GBAO) has been sentenced to five years in prison on extremism charges that his relatives call "wrong and unjust."

Relatives of Muzaffar Davlatmirov -- one of the most well-known leaders of the Ismaili Shi'ite Muslims in the volatile region, who was detained on July 26 -- told RFE/RL on August 4 that he had been sentenced after a court in the regional capital, Khorugh, found him guilty of public calls for extremist activities.

One of the relatives said the 58-year-old cleric was sentenced for his criticism of local authorities during the deadly dispersal of protests earlier this year.

"In his sermons he called on people to be calm and tolerant, but frequently criticized the illegal actions of the authorities. Law enforcement officers could not stand his fight for justice and the fact that Davlatmirov was well respected both by ordinary people and by informal leaders in the region," the relative said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

A close associate of Davlatmirov suggested that the cleric's imprisonment was most likely "retaliation" by local authorities for his leading of religious services at the funerals of three local informal leaders who were killed in May and June by police during what authorities called special operations against extremists.

Davlatmirov also took part in negotiations between the GBAO's nongovernmental organizations and authorities earlier this year regarding protests in the region bordering with Afghanistan.

Deep tensions between the Tajik government and residents of the GBAO have simmered since a five-year civil war broke out shortly after the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Protests are rare in the tightly controlled nation of 9.5 million where President Emomali Rahmon has ruled with an iron fist for nearly three decades.

The latest crackdown on activists in the GBAO followed protests that were initially sparked in mid-May by anger over the lack of an investigation into the 2021 death of an activist while in police custody and the refusal by regional authorities to consider the resignation of regional Governor Alisher Mirzonabot and Khorugh Mayor Rizo Nazarzoda.

The rallies intensified after one of the protesters, 29-year-old Zamir Nazrishoev, was killed by police on May 16, prompting the authorities to launch what they called a "counterterrorist operation."

The escalating violence in the region has sparked a call for restraint from UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Western diplomatic missions in Tajikistan, and human rights groups.

Gordo-Badakhshan, a linguistically and ethnically distinct region, has been home to rebels who opposed government forces during the conflict in the 1990s.

While it occupies almost half of the country's territory, its population is a mere 250,000. The region's mountainous terrain makes travel difficult, while its economy suffers from unemployment, difficult living conditions, and high food prices.

Copyright (c) 2015. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave NW, Ste 400, Washington DC 20036.