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Alleged Members Of Banned Tajik Extremist Group Tried

The trial of 15 suspected members of banned Islamist organization Jamaat Ansarullah has begun at Tajikistan's Supreme Court.

It's the first trial of suspected group members since it was banned in May.

The trial is being held behind closed doors.

Most of those on trial were arrested during counterterrorist operations in Tajikistan's eastern Rasht region last year.

Jamaat Ansarullah became known after it issued several videos last year calling on Tajik citizens to embrace holy war against infidels, and urging citizens to take action to support the Koran-based Shari'a law.

Tajik authorities have banned more than 10 Islamic groups and organizations since 2000, including Al-Qaida, the Taliban, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Jamaat Tablig, and Hizb ut-Tahrir.

Based on reporting by and