Reports from Turkey say a prominent Uzbek imam -- a critic of Uzbekistan’s government who was considered a radical Islamist -- has been shot dead in Istanbul.
The imam, who used the name Shaykh Abdullah Bukhoroy, was shot early on December 10 near his home in Istanbul’s Zeytinburnu district.
He died at an Istanbul hospital about seven hours later.
The imam was born with the name “Mirzagholib” in the Shakhrikon district of Uzbekistan's Andijon Province.
After leaving Uzbekistan a decade ago, he opened a madrasah in Istanbul and reportedly was operating eight of the religious boarding schools in Turkey at the time of his death.
In October, he claimed that his followers were being persecuted in Uzbekistan and that he was being sought by Uzbekistan's National Security Service.
In his sermons, he had advocated Islamic militancy against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.