Bruce Pannier  

The topic of this week’s Majlis session was the Tajik government’s recent moves to put pressure on the relatives of opposition leaders who have fled Tajikistan.

This started after the Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan (HNIT) organized a conference in Dortmund, Germany, on July 9 with other opposition groups that have been banned in Tajikistan.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) and the Norwegian Helsinki Committee released a report on the harassment that ensued on July 18.

On July 21, Tajik Interior Minister Ramazon Rahimzoda denied the accusations made in the report.

Muhammad Tahir, RFE/RL’s media relations manager, moderated a discussion on the HRW report.

Participating from Europe (we are not going to say exactly where), HNIT representative Mahmudjon Faizrahmon joined the discussion. From Bishkek, Majlis friend Steve Swerdlow, HRW’s chief researcher for Central Asia, took part in the discussion. From Canada, where she is currently enjoying a vacation, Helene Thibault, noted author of works on Tajikistan and professor at Nazarbaev University in Astana, Kazakhstan, participated in the talk. I pitched in a few comments also.

Bruce Pannier

Bruce Pannier writes the Qishloq Ovozi blog and appears regularly on the Majlis podcast for RFE/RL.