Tajikistan. In January, a police officer was sentenced to
13 years in prison for torturing a prisoner and bribing him.
The prisoner accused of belonging to a banned Islamist
organization is said to have taken his life. Police violence
has long been a problem in the country.
CountryAAH, two people were killed and many injured in violence at a
disputed part of the border with Kyrgyzstan in March.
Hundreds of people were evacuated.
Hundreds of Tajik nationals had joined the Islamic State
(IS) terrorist movement in Iraq and Syria. Many were killed
during the year, while others were imprisoned. Over 80
children were flown to Tajikistan from Iraq, where their
Tajik mothers were arrested accused of belonging to IS. The
children would be adapted to civilian life and handed over
In May, 32 people were killed in riots in a prison just
outside the capital, Dusjanbe. Militant prisoners killed
guards and prisoners with knives, set fire to the hospital
and took hostages, before 24 of them were shot dead by
security forces. Some of the dead were reported to be
political prisoners. IS said to be behind the uprising.
Later, 14 prisoners died during a transport, and they were
suspected of being poisoned with bread by a fellow prisoner.
In June, Tajikistan hosted a summit with Asian leaders.
President Emomali Rachmon then signed an agreement with
China's leader Xi Jinping on cooperation on investment,
agriculture, industry and the fight against terrorism.
New violence erupted in July at the border with
Kyrgyzstan, where at least one person was killed and several
injured. The presidents of both countries met at the border
and talked to residents on both sides in an attempt to calm
the emotions. But later, soldiers and border police on both
sides were killed in new gunfire. Many were injured. The
former Soviet republics have since the dissolution of the
Soviet Union tried to agree on the border demarcation.
In September, a member of Jehovah's Witnesses was
sentenced to seven and a half years in prison accused of
extremism. Jehovah's Witnesses are forbidden in the land and
are not allowed to spread their teachings.
Tajikistani lawyer Buzurgmehr Yorov was awarded a
prestigious Human Rights Award instituted by Central Asian
migrants in Europe. Yorov was sentenced to 28 years in
prison for defending arrested members of the banned Islamic
renewal party. His brother received the award on his behalf
Then, the Tajikistan Supreme Court stamped an alliance of
opposition movements, the PMT (Tajikistan National
Alliance), in exile in EU countries as a terrorist
organization. PMT had been formed in Warsaw.
The Committee on Defense for Journalists, CPJ, in New
York expressed concern over censorship and threats against
journalists in Tajikistan. According to CPJ, the families of
critically reviewing journalists were also threatened.
Prior to the 25th anniversary of the country's
constitution in November, amnesty was issued to over 3,000
convicted prisoners, and 5,000 others received pardon. Among
those released, there were those who were convicted of
liking on the Internet what the regime considers extremism.
The prison sentence for close to 10,000 prisoners would also
be shortened. One of them was lawyer Buzurgmehr Yorov, whose
sentence would be reduced by six years.
On Constitution Day, over 20 people were killed at the
border with Uzbekistan as IS supporters attacked a border
posting. The victims were border guards and attackers who
ended up in a fire.