Uzbekistan
22.08.06
Urgent Interventions

Uzbekistan: Assault against Mr. Bakhtior Khamroev

New information
UZB 002 / 0806 / OBS 095.1
Attack / Ill-treatment / Arbitrary detention
Uzbekistan

August 22, 2006

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), has received new information and requests your urgent intervention in the following situation in Uzbekistan.

New information:

The Observatory has been informed by reliable sources of the attack perpetrated against Mr. Bakhtior Khamroev, head of the Djizak section of the Human Rights Society in Uzbekistan (HRSU), on August 18, 2006.

According to the information received, Mr. Khamroev was attacked at his home, in Djizak, as he was having a meeting with two representatives of the British Embassy in Uzbekistan, who had come to visit him to inquire into the human rights situation in Djizak and into the situation of his son, Mr. Ikhtior Khamroev, who has been detained since August 2, 2006 (See background information).

At about 11:15 am, 15 minutes after the beginning of the meeting, five women and a man knocked at his door and as soon as the door opened, rushed into the apartment insulting him, accusing him of being a traitor and of having “spies” at his home. Mr. Khamroev managed to have them out of the house, but they stayed outside, kept knocking violently on the door and cut the phone and electricity connections to Mr. Khamroev’s flat. Mr. Khamroev then decided to call the police from his mobile phone, but when the policemen arrived, approximately 20 women who had joined the first women took this occasion to rush into the flat.

In the meantime, four representatives from Djizak town hall arrived and told Mr. Khamroev that he had to stop his human rights activities. Mr. Khamroev had not called them to inform them of the situation.

Finally, the women attacked him as well as his family members tearing their clothes apart. One of them hurt him with a metallic object, which caused him a concussion to the head. He was brought to the hospital where he received emergency care, but the doctors refused to follow his case and to open a medical file, which would have implied the report of the situation to the police.

The Observatory is very concerned about these events, which takes place in a context of ongoing deterioration of the situation of all independent human rights defenders in the country. Moreover, this adds to numerous acts of harassment against M. Khamroev, who has been under constant surveillance from the police since several months and whose son has remained detained since the beginning of August, which seems aiming at sanctioning his father’s human rights activities. Mr. Bakhtior Khamroev’s work consists in leading actions such as monitoring, legal proceedings and demonstrations in favour of the rights of smallholders, as well as denouncing violence and torture committed against citizens at Djizak high-ranking officials’ bidding.

Background information:



On July 23, 2006, a group of young men began to insult Mr. Ikhtior Khamroev, and a second-year student at the Technological University of Djizak, after he went out from the family’s flat to buy some bread. He tried not to care about them and continued to walk but the insults became more violent and Mr. Khamroev was then severely beaten by the men.

However, on August 2, 2006 the police of Djizak arrested him and opened an inquiry against him by. Interrogated during more than eight hours without having access to a lawyer, he was then charged with “hooliganism” under article 277 of the Uzbek Criminal Code (Chapter XX: Crimes against public order). He is facing from 5 to 8 years of prison.

On August 8, 2006, Mr. Bakhtior Khamroev was summoned by Mr. Akram Isamov, a police investigator, to be interrogated as a witness in the case involving his son.

Actions required:

Please write to the Uzbek authorities urging them to:
i. Guarantee in all circumstances the physical and psychological integrity of Messrs. Bakhtior and Ikhtior Khamroev and all Mr. Bakhtior Khamroev’s family members;

ii. Conduct a fair and impartial inquiry into those acts in order to identify their authors acts, bring them to justice and sanction them according to law;

iii. Release M. Ikhtior Khamroev immediately and unconditionally since his detention is arbitrary;

iii. Put an end to all acts of harassment against them as well as all other human rights defenders in Uzbekistan and conform with the provisions of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders, adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on December 9, 1998, especially its article 1, which states that “everyone has the right, individually and in association with others, to promote and to strive for the protection and realisation of human rights and fundamental freedoms at the national and international levels” and article 12.2, which states that “the State shall take all necessary measures to ensure the protection by the competent authorities of everyone, individually and in association with others, against any violence, threats, retaliation, de facto or de jure adverse discrimination, pressure or any other arbitrary action as a consequence of his or her legitimate exercise of the rights referred to in the present Declaration;

v. Ensure in all circumstances respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in accordance with international human rights standards and international instruments ratified by Uzbekistan.

Addresses :

  • President of Uzbekistan, Islam Abduganiyevich Karimov, ul. Uzbekistanskaya 43, Rezidentsia prezidenta, 700163 Tashkent, Republic of Uzbekistan, Fax: +998 71 133 1395325, E-mail: presidents_office@press-service.uz

  • Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Elyor Majidovich Ganiev, Respublika Uzbekistan; 700029 g. Tashkent; pl. Mustakillik, 5; Ministerstvo inostrannykh del RU, S.S., Uzbekistan, Fax: + 998 71 139 15 17, E-mail: rnews@mfa.uz

  • Parliamentary Commissioner for Human Rights, Sayora Rashidova, ul. Xalqlar Dostligi 1, 700035 Tashkent, Republic of Uzbekistan, Fax: +998 71 139 85 55, E-mail: office@ombudsman.gov.uz

  • Chairman of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Ubaydulla Mingbaev, Respublika Uzbekistan; 700183 g. Tashkent; ul. Abdulla Kodiri, 1; Verkhovny Sud Respubliki Uzbekistan, Fax: + 998 71 144-62-93

  • General Prosecutor of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Rashidjon Hamidovich Kodirov, ul. Gulyamova 66, 700047 Tashkent, Republic of Uzbekistan, Fax: +998 71 133 39 17, E-mail: prokuratura@lawyer.com

  • National Centre for Human Rights, Senator Akmal Saidov Natsionalny tsentr po pravam cheloveka, 5/3, Mustakillik Maidoni, g. Tashkent, Respublika Uzbekistan. 700029, Fax: + 998 71 139 13 56 / 45 16, E-mail: office@nchr.uz

  • Ambassador of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Permanent Mission of the Republic of Uzbekistan to the United Nations in Geneva, PO Box 1853, 1215 Geneva 15, Switzerland, Fax: +4122 799 43 02, E-mail: uzbekistan@bluewin.ch


Please also write to the diplomatic representations of Uzbekistan in your respective countries.

***
Paris – Geneva, August 22, 2006

Kindly inform us of any action undertaken quoting the code of this appeal in your reply.

The Observatory, a FIDH and OMCT venture, is dedicated to the protection of Human Rights Defenders and aims to offer them concrete support in their time of need.
The Observatory was the winner of the 1998 Human Rights Prize of the French Republic.

To contact the Observatory, call the emergency line:
Email : Appeals@fidh-omct.org
Tel et fax FIDH : + 33 1 43 55 55 05 / 33 1 43 55 18 80
Tel et fax OMCT : +41 22 809 49 39 / 41 22 809 49 29
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