A court in Uzbekistan has sentenced a young Uzbek man to 13 years in jail on charges of fighting alongside Islamic State (IS) militants in Syria.
Uzbekistan's Supreme Court said on November 13 that 23-year-old Muhammad Abdullaev pleaded guilty and confessed that he had been recruited in Astrakhan, Russia, in 2013 by IS supporters who sent him to Syria via Azerbaijan and Turkey.
The court said he confirmed that he joined IS fighters in Turkey and then crossed into Syria.
He later returned to Turkey, where he stayed for one year, before returning to Uzbekistan, where he was arrested.
Russian Prosecutor-General Yury Chaika said on November 10 that citizens of 100 countries, including Russia and former Soviet republics, were fighting along Islamic militants in the Middle East.
Earlier in September, the first deputy director of Russia's Federal Security Service, Sergei Smirnov, estimated there were about 3,000 Central Asians fighting as part of several different Islamic militant groups in Syria and Iraq.