Series of interviews with the families of Hizb ut Tahrir members who are still being tortured in the prisons of Uzbekistan by the orders of the tyrant Islam Karimov
Series of interviews with the families of Hizb ut Tahrir members who are still being tortured in the prisons of Uzbekistan by the orders of the tyrant Islam Karimov
How long will this ordeal last?
The wife of Brother Abdul Ghani narrates her suffering to us:
Her husband Abdul Ghani Tichabayev was born on 14/9/1971 in the city of Margilan. He holds an intermediate certificate and he is a father of three children. At the beginning of 1997, he started to become active with the political Islamic party called Hizb ut Tahrir. In the second month of the year 2000, he was arrested by sectors of the Uzbek Interior Ministry. He was sentenced to nine years imprisonment and was transferred with a group to a detention centre called Topuksoi in the city of Tashkent.
During my visits to my husband in these areas, the families and I were witness to those cruel and inhuman conditions were my husband stayed. Even the waiting rooms where the families sit during the cold and heat had no suitable facilities for children or even the adults. We have faced poor treatment and rude rejection by the prison guards when we requested the delivery of some food and urgent medicine for the health of my husband. After all these difficulties, upon entry to visit my husband in prison we saw unimaginable severe and grim conditions inside the prison. I’ve noticed that the colour of skin of my husband’s face has changed and I asked him what happened. What happened to you? After intense insistence from me, I found out that he was taken out of solitary confinement only yesterday and he told me about the degree of misery and suffering in confinement.
He told me that even though we are in the month of March they put him in a cold place without giving him warm clothes and left him in the usual prisoner uniform which is unsuitable in the solitary confined areas in prison. The water pipes in this area are frozen and in these freezing areas, the leaking water was which made rust appear and the chair at the bottom was rusted. I asked him how he managed to spend nights there. He replied that after every two to three hours the cold became so unbearable that he began to read the Qur’an loudly making the prison guards approach his cell angrily and start to throw stones at him to shut his mouth, and so this is the only way he was able to warm himself. He stayed in that cold cell for fifteen nights.
Despite this severe ordeal my husband has spent 9 years in prison, when there was one month left for his release, they fabricated for him in prison a charge in order to extend the duration of his sentence thus, they added three more years and 3 months to his original sentence. He was then transferred to a new prison; Number 6433 in the city of Qarshi. This prison was a brick factory in the past.
When we visited my husband there we found him living in harsh conditions once again, they forced him to work 24 hours to the point that his kidneys stopped working and he developed high fever and vomited all night. When we asked him why he didn’t ask them to take him for treatment in prison he said that they took him there and they gave him two injections, they were useless. When they gave him the injection they tried to negotiate and pressure him to leave the party and denounce it, but he refused and then the doctor changed the injection to a different previously used one. Then my husband refused to get any medical help because of the high probability of contracting AIDS.
Despite the extreme contempt and inhumane treatment, my husband was able to carry out the three-year sentence. When there were two months remaining for the end of his sentence, they punished him again by increasing the time of his sentence by fabricating another charge once again. This time it was for five years and six months, and he was transferred to another prison, Number 6448 called Navoiy, so up until today my husband is spending the time of his incarceration in this prison. Compared to previous prisons, this prison is the worst because the humiliations, insults, suffering are more and far worse and the fiercest.
Last time we went to visit him we could not identify him because he lost a lot of weight, so much so that only the skin covered his bone, so much so that if water is poured on his collars bone the water will remain there in the space between the collar bone and shoulders. He became so thin that we could hardly recognize him and became very weak to the point that he could not swallow food. Regardless of which food he eats he vomits it immediately, this happened during the whole time of our visit with him. For 3 days he could not digest any food.
When we were leaving my husband said that he did not want us to visit him again because he did not see any benefit in that. He was told shamelessly and firmly by the prison guards that he has no way out of here, and that the orders from above say that they have to destroy and finish him off in this prison. So my husband said, “Do not come back, there is no point, Allah willing I hope to meet you in the Hereafter”.
How long will this ordeal last??? Didn’t he finish his prison term?? Or do they want to deprive them of their humanity as they deprived them of their freedom???
The daughter of one of the members of Hizb ut Tahrir narrates the account of her father, Hakeem Jan, and her brother and uncle:
My father Rosibayev Hakeem Jan was born in 1958. Between 1996 and 1997, he began working actively with the party. We are a family of five children. On 16 February 1999, the Tashkent bombings took place and it was necessary to frame the bombings on Hizb ut Tahrir, consequently the elements of the Uzbek Interior Ministry arrested my father a week after the bombings. After three months of detention, he was sentenced to twelve years. He was transferred as part of a group to a prison, but the name and the location of the prison was not disclosed. After six months of searching, we were able to find out that he was in Zengeot prison in Tashkent.
In April of the following year, i.e. 2000 CE he was transferred as part of a group to Jaslyk Prison. There the prison guards stood in two rows at the entrance of the prison holding metal bars in their hands which they used to beat the detainees upon their entrance to the prison; this is how they would “welcome” detainees. My father was severely beaten and ruthlessly tortured, he was prevented from praying; and on one occasion, they banned him from meeting visitors from our family. When our family went to visit him the next time, we asked my father about the reason for not allowing our visit the first time, he said that they saw me pray so they struck me with a blow that made me pass out and I became seriously ill. He said they mock us here in a revolting manner, they do not give us food and they take our personal clothing and make us wear the prison suit only.
Recently a martyred prisoner was released, his name was Muzaffar and my father was a witness to the killing, and for that my father was transferred to a new prison called Tash. There my father, along with those who came with him, were forced to remain standing for a period of fifteen consecutive days. After we learned that my father was transferred to Tash Prison, my grandparents went to visit him. After a long travel to visit him, they were barred from meeting my father and he was quickly transferred to his previous prison, Jaslyk. There he was brutally tortured, they pulled out all his teeth and he became severely ill, his illness did not deter them from placing him in solitary confinement. When we go to visit him we take medicine with us for him, but the guards refuse to enter the medicine and make us return it.
When there was a month left for his sentence serving time they pinned a charge against him in order to extend his sentence, and this is what happened. Afterwards he was transferred to Zarafshan Prison. Then we went to meet him in Zarafshan. When we arrived, we learned that my father was put in solitary confinement in the prison and we were told that the one who enters solitary confinement is barred from visits. He was not treated despite his severe illness and they refused to give him the medicine that we brought with us.
In the spring of 2006, the authorities accused my brother Abdul Haleem and my uncle Mohammed Janov of following the same path as my father and they were arrested. Then a case was filed against them and they were accused of following in the same path as my father. But my brother and my uncle did not confess to this false charge, so the authorities summoned all our relatives for questioning; and upon the arrival of our relatives, the authorities threatened my brother that if he does not confess then they will file a charge against his sister. Under the threats my brother signed the confession papers, he was sentenced to six and a half years. After ten days, he was transferred to prison. After a painstaking search, we found him in Topoksoi Prison.
When we went to visit him, we found out that my brother had just come out of solitary confinement in the prison. We noticed that his entire back was blue in colour, when we asked him about the reason for the discoloration; he said that they beat him on the back excessively because they saw him praying. And they mocked him in a degrading manner; he told us that when they begin to beat him he loses consciousness after two minutes of beating.
Recently he was transferred to a covered prison called Bazaar Karpfol. In this covered prison it is not permitted for families to bring anything to the prisoners, only one visit is permitted per year with great difficulty, and then when we visit him and watch him in this really heartbreaking and appalling state. My brother had only year left to his sentence, but they pinned a charge against him to extend his sentence to an additional four years. He was then transferred to the Qarshi city prison, prisoner No. 6151 and there he was also put in solitary confinement.
During these days when we visit my father, brother and uncle, and each time they tell us, “It seems that this is going to be our last meeting with you, here they mock us in a humiliating way and torture us with unbearable methods, they want to break us, we believe that we will not survive for the next meeting”.
The wife of one of Hizb ut Tahrir members narrates the story of her husband whose name is Madhameen:
My husband Naziv Madhameen was born on the second of October in the year 1966, we have three children. In 1989, my husband worked as a magazine salesman, and in the days of independence he worked in trade privately. On the eighth month of 1989, he became a member of Hizb ut Tahrir and started to become active in the Dawah work with the party. On the first day of the month of October of 1999 and it was the first day of Ramadan, when he started giving Dawah he was arrested by elements of the Uzbek Interior Ministry. In the second month of 2000, he was sentenced for eight years imprisonment. On the fifth month of the same year, he was transferred along with a group to Colony No. 51 in the city of Qarshi. And he remained in the colony for eight years.
During this period, we were able to visit him once every six months; afterwards we were allowed to visit him once every three months. Every time we visited him he told us about the various torture methods, humiliation, and mocking which they are exposed to in this place. He was informed that he must comply with the internal orders and the laws of the prison and that he should not pray at all.
In order to infect him with some of the diseases found in prison, such as AIDS or syphilis or tuberculosis, he was placed in rooms where detainees carrying such serious diseases were present. He was forced to sleep next to them, and to eat with them and use their utensils and belongings.
In December of 2007, his eight-year sentence ended, but they fabricated a charge against him and extended his sentence to three more years. He was transferred to Tchertechek Prison on the outskirts of Tashkent. During the time of his sentence in the prison, his torture and insults continued which resulted in the paralysis of one of his legs. He was transferred to Sengurwood (a hospital for the detainees in Tashkent) and received treatment there.
While receiving treatment, they treated him in a tough, violent, and inhumane manner. During this treatment period, they framed him with a new charge so that they can extend his prison sentence to three more years and six months, and he was transferred after this extension to Chaakhali Colony No. 33 in the city of Qarshi.
After a series of extensions to his sentence, my husband had lost hope of getting out of prison. Each time we visit him he complains about these extensions. He is infuriated with Democracy and its advocates who boast about the liberties. Where are the human rights that they boast about? Who are they protecting and taking care of?
In Uzbekistan prisons lies thousands of Muslims who are tortured and executed. Is there an end for these tragedies and pains? We do not know where to turn for help. And to whom do we tell our problems?!
The sister of the martyr, Shawkat, narrates his story:
My brother Shawkat was born in 1964 in Surxondaryo area in Alaltensaski region. In the last years of his life my brother was working in a network of commercial markets, called Matlobat. He also worked in a gas station. After the government institutions stopped working, my brother set up his own trade business.
In 1997 my brother was introduced to the ideas of Hizb ut Tahrir and adopted them and he became a member of Hizb ut Tahrir in the same year. Even though my brother was blessed with all kinds of riches and financial ability in this world, but his heart was not attached to these temptations nor with this life, and instead of all this worldly goods which were provided for him, my brother preferred to work with Hizb ut Tahrir in order to carry and spread the Deen of Allah to mankind. My brother was a righteous man who was a haven for the oppressed families.
In 2005, National Security Forces have arrested my brother for being a member of Hizb ut Tahrir and sentenced him for eight years imprisonment. My brother was serving his prison time in the city of Navoiy. In this period of his detention, the prison guards tortured him severely and they infected him with tuberculosis. His torture and disease continued in the isolated cell, there he was brutally and fatally assaulted and humiliated; this torture, abuse and harm continued until my brother Shawkat was martyred by the hands of the prison guards.
Dear esteemed listeners, here is the story of the martyr Saif ul-Din, narrated by his brother:
My brother Muminov Saif ul-Din was born in 1967 in the Surxondaryo area of Denov city. He was married with four children. Since his childhood my brother was fond of studying the Deen of Islam and for this reason he studied the Arabic language and mastered it. He used to teach the Arabic language to the brothers seeking the knowledge in his house.
He became a member of Hizb ut Tahrir in 1999 and followed in this path, working day and night. In the year of 2000, the Uzbek authorities began to harass him but it did not deter him from continuing in his path with the party. After the harassment of the Uzbek authorities intensified against my brother, he migrated to another city called Qarshi and began a new life there.
There my brother continued to work with the members of the party until the elements of the National Security of the city of Qarshi arrested him. They then took him to their headquarters and took him to the basement where they tortured him brutally and inhumanely. My brother could not withstand the torture, It wasn’t long before he was martyr by their hands, yes they killed him.
Dear honorable listeners, here is the story narrated by the wife of the martyr Makhridillo:
My deceased husband, Orinov Makhridillo, was born on 30/1/1972 in Andijan region. Following the events of the 16th of February of the year 1999, he was arrested by elements from the Interior Ministry on the 26th of March of the same year in 1999.
They were about ten men from the Ministry of Interior who came to our house; my husband was in the house. This matter was pre-planned the day before they came to us. Then after that they came to our house, they summoned the neighbors to be witnesses for the inspection. After the inspection they did not find any weapons in our possessions, so they put sixteen bullets in a room and “Al Waie” magazine and then they announced that they have found these things in our house.
They took the bullets and the magazine to the Forensic and Evidence Center for the detection of fingerprints, they claimed that traces of cannabis was found and they claimed that they belonged to my deceased husband. They immediately charged my husband based on this fabricated evidence, and my husband was sentenced to five years and six months imprisonment. For six months we were not told of his location. Only in the month of December of the same year, i.e. after six months, we were told that he has is in Jaslyk Prison. He stayed in this prison for a year and a half. Here in this prison they infected my husband with tuberculosis. My husband was transferred from this prison to Tashkent and from there to a new detention center No. 36/64.
When I travelled to visit him, I found him in a dire condition and he was frustrated, and we know why, of course, because everyone knows how bad and horrific the conditions are in this prison.
For example, when he was allowed to go to the shower, the prison guards take them to the shower rooms and they strip them of their clothes and beat them with batons. Bruises covered most of his back to the point that there may not have been a spot spared from their beating. They were even beaten on the way to and from the bathroom. They are given only fifteen minutes to have a shower. My husband told me that he would not be lying if he told me that soap did not touch his body for a year and a half.
These stories about the insults and contempt are nothing compared to the real humiliation that occurs inside the prison. My body gets chills because of the horror stories that my husband has told me; the horror and the vulgar inhumane methods of torture in there.
At first I visited my husband once every three months, and because I lacked the financial means, I visited him once every six months.
Because of the disease, torture, and starvation my deceased husband lost weight significantly in Navoi Prison. Because of his illness, he was transferred to Songrud in Tashkent, and there has was falsely accused of violating the law and they transferred him to a prison in Cologne in the city of Bukhara. There he remained for a month and a half and then was brought back to Songrud again.
On the 28th of September of 2004, my husband completed his sentence and he was released. But my husband did not live long after that because his illness had intensified, he suffered greatly because of his illness, and was unable to cope any more from tuberculosis. On 16th August 2006, my husband passed away.