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Independent Tajik Journalist Arrested For Allegedly Inciting Discord

Tajik journalist Daler Sharifov
Tajik journalist Daler Sharifov

DUSHANBE -- Independent Tajik journalist Daler Sharifov, who has been held by police for more than two days, has been arrested on a charge of inciting public discord.

Sharifov's lawyer, Abdurahmon Sharifov, who is no relation, told RFE/RL that a court in Dushanbe ruled on January 30 to place the journalist in pretrial detention for two months.

According to the lawyer, Sharifov is suspected of "inciting ethnic, racial, and religious discord."

If found guilty, Sharifov may face up to five years in prison.

Sharifov's lawyer did not give any other details, saying that he signed papers obliging him not to reveal information related to the case.

Daler Sharifov's relatives told RFE/RL earlier that he had been held at a police department for questioning case since January 28.

On January 27, police searched his apartment in Dushanbe and confiscated a computer and several books.

Sharifov, 31, is an independent journalist known for reports in which he often criticizes Tajik authorities.