Uzbekistan jails Andijan refugee for 10 years

Dilorom Abdukadirova – Dilorom Abdukadirova, a refugee from Andijan who has returned home from exile in Australia, was jailed for 10 years and two months on the charges of anticonstitutional activities in Andijan today.

The Andijan town court tried Abdukadirova, 44, under three articles of the Uzbek Criminal Code – Article 223 illegal crossing the border, Article 159 attempting to overthrow the constitutional system and Article 244 taking part in riots.

Abdukadirova did not plead guilty because, she said, she did not commit any crime she was accused of.

Her relatives were happy at today’s trial that she was defending herself because at the previous court session she looked sick and devastated and admitted her guilt.

The refugee’s brother Muhammadjon Muminov, who remained in Australia, said the ruling was “unfair and totally groundless”. He is confident that his sister, who is a mother of four, did not commit any crime.

It is hard to understand why the Uzbek authorities needed to jail the woman who came back home to be with her husband and four children whom she had not seen since 13 May 2005.

Her brother thinks that a National Security Service Col called Hokim, who interrogated her when she flew to Tashkent from Australia on 7 January 2010, wanted to take revenge on her after she remarked on his swearing at the airport.

Others suggested that she had been punished for an interview she had given to journalists when she was in a refugee camp in Kyrgyzstan and told them about the government’s crushing of a rally in Andijan when troops killed hundreds of protesters.

Abdukadirova’s relatives said that they would fight for justice because they have no choice.