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Tatarstan Imam Charged With Extremism

Rustem Safin, imam of Al-Islah mosque in the republic of Tatarstan's capital, Kazan
KAZAN -- Police in Russia's republic of Tatarstan say the imam of the Al-Ikhlas Mosque in the capital, Kazan, has been charged with organizing extremist activities.

Imam Rustem Safin is accused of propagating the aims of Hizb-ut Tahrir, an organization officially banned in Russia as a terrorist group.

Kazan police searched Safin's mosque on October 17 and confiscated audio, video, and print materials with alleged extremist content.

All the confiscated materials have been sent to experts for studies.

Safin was officially instructed not to leave Kazan while his case is being investigated.

In 2009, Safin received a suspended sentence of two years in jail for ties with Hizb-ut Tahrir.

On October 16, a court in Kazan shut down an Islamic center in the city for operating without a license.