8. May 2007
Islam A. Karimov, President
International PEN has informed its members about the continued detention of Dzamshid (Jamshid) Karimov, an Uzbek journalist detained in a psychiatric hospital in Samarkand since September 2006. Mr Karimov is a well known and outspoken critic of the government and for his reporting on socio-political issues. There seems to be justified fears that he is being held in retaliation for his reporting. We fear that Mr Karimov is ill treated in the psychiatric institution where he –for unknown reasons – is being detained.
Norwegian PEN would like to express its deep concern for Dzhamshid Karimov and call for his immediate release
We demand that while he is deprived of his freedom, he is granted access to his family, independent legal advice and any necessary medical treatment
We all on the Uzbek government to do all that it can to respect freedom of expression, as recognised in the Uzbek Constitution, and to guarantee that cases like this will not occur again
Finally, we urge the Uzbek government to comply with its obligations under Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to which Uzbekistan is a signatory.
The family of Mr Karimov has been complaining about the high level of police surveillance at their home preceding the arrest. We also request that this kind of harassment be brought to an end.
I would like to thank Your Excellency for giving this case you most immediate attention and for seeing to it that the above person is being released from detention.
Member of the Writers in Prison committee
Sent by e-mail attachment to:
President of the Republic
General prosecutor Rashidzohn Kodirov
Head of the National Centre for Human Rights Akmal Saidov