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Five Sentenced In Kazakhstan For Being Members Of Hizb Ut-Tahrir

A court in Kazakhstan's largest city, Almaty, has sentenced five members of the banned Islamic group Hizb ut-Tahrir to prison terms of between six and 7 1/2 years.

An Almaty City Court spokesman, Quandyq Eshmet, told RFE/RL that the five men were sentenced late on June 30.

The men were found guilty of inciting ethnic or religious hatred, intention to disrupt constitutional order, and propagating terrorism.

Hizb ut-Tahrir is a London-based Sunni political organization that seeks to unite all Muslim countries into an Islamic caliphate.

The Kazakh government banned the group in 2005, branding its members and supporters as "extremists."

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