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Bomb Blast Near Tashkent Mosque

  • RFE/RL's Uzbek Service

A bomb has exploded near the Tokhtaboy Mosque in the Uzbek capital, Tashkent, where a controversial imam was once the chief cleric.

The explosion happened just after Friday Prayers on September 4.

Police confirmed the explosion to RFE/RL and said it was caused by an improvised explosive device left at a bus stop.

Police said no one was injured by the blast and added they were searching for a suspect who witnesses said left the bomb and ran away.

Obidkhon Qori Nazarov was the imam at the Tokhtaboy Mosque in the 1990s but fled the country in 1998 as the authorities prepared to detain him on charges of involvement with Islamic militants, charges Nazarov denied.

Nazarov eventually received asylum in Sweden in 2006, where in 2012 he was the target of an assassination attempt.

Swedish prosecutor Krister Petersson told RFE/RL on September 2 that there was abundant evidence suggesting that Uzbek authorities were behind the assassination attempt.