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Kyrgyz Police Arrest Alleged Hizb Ut-Tahrir Leader

15 February 2005 -- Kyrgyz police have arrested an alleged leader of the banned Hizb ut-Tahrir Islamic party.

Zamir Sydykov, a police spokesman is the eastern city of Osh, said police arrested the man for possessing explosives and extremist literature. He said the man was detained on 13 February.

Hizb ut-Tahrir is banned in several Central Asian countries and Russia. It seeks to establish an Islamic caliphate, or independent Islamic state, in Central Asia. It claims to be a moderate, nonviolent organization. However, two political groups that have their origins in Hizb ut-Tahrir -- Hizb-an-Nusra and Akrimiya -- do have more radical platforms.

Thousands of Hizb ut-Tahrir members and supporters have been arrested and imprisoned for alleged extremist activities in Central Asia and Russia.