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Uzbek Justice Ministry Recommends Closure Of U.S. NGO

(RFE/RL) October 4, 2006 -- Reports say Uzbekistan's Justice Ministry is recommending that yet another U.S. nongovernmental organization be closed down.

Uzbekistan's government-controlled website says authorities suspect representatives of the Colorado-headquartered Joint Development Associate International (JDA) of violating national laws and proselytizing among local Muslims and Orthodox Christians.

The foreign-based independent information website carried a similar report on October 3.

In Uzbekistan, where its has been working since 2004, JDA offers microcredit programs to help poor farmers. It also provides training and assistance in the public health and agriculture sectors.

Uzbek authorities have closed down a string of foreign, mostly American NGOs in recent months.

The trend intensified after last year's uprising in the eastern city of Andijon and the deadly military crackdown that followed.


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