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Prominent Tajik Opposition Figure Dies

ASHT, Tajikistan -- The author of the first declaration of independence for Tajikistan, Tohir Abdujabbor, has died of cancer, RFE/RL's Tajik Service reports.

Abdujabbor, 63, founded the national movement Rastokhez (Renaissance) at the end of the 1980s.

He was among the first non-Communist Party members to serve in Tajikistan's parliament.

Abdujabbor's speeches in the Soviet-era parliament influenced thousands of people who later joined his movement.

Many current government and opposition leaders were followers of Abdujabbor.

Abdujabbor left the country during the Tajik civil war and lived in Iran and Kyrygzstan. He slowly gave up politics as well.

Abdujabbor returned to Dushanbe a few years ago and taught at Tajikistan's Slavyanic University.