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Tajik Prosecutor Seeks Nine Years In Prison For Well-Known Human Rights Defender

Tajik human rights advocate Izzat Amon (file photo)
Tajik human rights advocate Izzat Amon (file photo)

DUSHANBE -- The prosecution has asked the Dushanbe City Court to sentence a well-known human rights defender, Izzat Amon, to nine years in prison on fraud charges.

A court official told RFE/RL on condition of anonymity on September 29 that Prosecutor Abdulmumin Kabirzoda's request was made at the high-profile trial, which is being held behind closed doors, two days earlier.

The official added that, after his verdict and sentence are pronounced, Amon is very likely to be pardoned due to the law on mass amnesty that was adopted earlier in September to mark the 30th anniversary of the Central Asian nation's independence.

The Dushanbe City Court's secretary confirmed to RFE/RL that Amon will be amnestied as he paid damages that were being demanded by the plaintiffs. It was not immediately clear who may have received such a payment, and the court secretary did not disclose any further information.

Amon for many years led the Center for Tajiks in Moscow before he was deprived of Russian citizenship and forced to return to Dushanbe in March at the request of Tajik authorities, who accused the activist of financial fraud.

Amon's supporters and relatives have dismissed the charges as politically motivated.

Amon's nonprofit organization in Moscow has helped Tajik migrant workers find jobs, obtain work and residency permits, and get legal advice.

RFE/RL has been declared an "undesirable organization" by the Russian government.

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