Radio Liberty: Disappearance of Tajik migrant leader in Russia sparks suspicions in GBAO

1 year ago tngadmin Comments Off on Radio Liberty: Disappearance of Tajik migrant leader in Russia sparks suspicions in GBAO

Radio Liberty reported on January 28 that a Tajik migrant community leader accused of inciting anti-government sentiment vanished in Russia earlier this month, raising suspicion in Tajikistan that he was secretly detained and extradited to Dushanbe.

Amriddin Alovatshoyev’s family in the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO) say they last heard from him on January 11, after which his phone went dead.

The following day, Pamirdailynews -- a publication that focuses on GBAO -- reported that Alovatshoyev had been “abducted” in Russia.

Pamirdailynews claimed that Tajik security services had been pursuing Alovatshoyev, 44, since the November anti-government rallies in GBAO.

Tajik authorities have denied the claim. The Interior Ministry told RFE/RL that Alovatshoyev wasn’t among the people sought by Tajik security forces.

Law enforcement agencies in Tajikistan insist they are not aware of Alovatshoyev’s detention in Russia.

Alovatshoyev’s disappearance comes as prosecutors have reportedly launched a new probe into the four-day rallies in Khorog, the capital of GBAO, on November 25-28 that killed three people and injured at least 17 others.

During a government meeting in Khorog on January 10, one official accused Alovatshoyev of inciting anti-government sentiment among young people in GBAO, “from abroad.”

Alovatshoyev reportedly moved to Russia in 2019 and has since been known as a leader of the GBAO natives working and studying there. He set up a group that promotes healthy living as well as maintaining close ties among the community members.

RFE/RL says there has been no indication that Alovatshoyev’s group has been involved in politics or anti-government activities.

RFE/RL reports that according to human rights defenders, at least 15 Tajik anti-government activists and opposition supporters have disappeared in Russia since 2015. Some of them have reportedly reappeared in Tajikistan -- often in police custody, facing dubious charges ranging from fraud to extremism. The whereabouts of others remain unknown.

Source: Asia-Plus