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Uzbek Court Cancels Conviction Of Scholar Jailed On Treason Charge

Uzbek scholar Andrei Kubatin (file photo)
Uzbek scholar Andrei Kubatin (file photo)

TASHKENT -- A court in Tashkent has reversed the conviction of a well-known scholar, orientalist Andrei Kubatin, who was imprisoned for high treason.

The Tashkent Regional Court exonerated Kubatin and released him from custody on September 26.

Kubatin, a well-known Turkologist and historian, who is an expert on dozens of languages and on Central Asian history as well as ancient Uyghur manuscripts, was sentenced to 11 years in prison in 2017 for passing scanned copies of historic scripts to a Turkish company that planned to issue travel guides for tourists visiting Uzbekistan.

In 2018, Kubatin's prison term was shortened to five years.

Some 50 scholars from several countries signed a petition last year urging Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoev to release Kubatin.

In March, Kubatin's sister, Klara Sakharova, in a video address to Mirziyoev, asked him to release her brother, saying that he faced physical and moral pressure while in detention.