The Statement of the Tajik National Alliance on the Tragedy of Vahdat Prison

The National Alliance of Tajikistan (NAT) strongly condemns the tragedy of Vahdat prison (Kirpichni), that has reportedly killed and injured dozens of our fellow contrymen, including political prisoners such as Sattor Karimov, Qiyomiddin Ghozi and well-known clergy Saidmahdikhon Sattorov (Shaikh Temur) and states as following:

  1. The Tajikistan government is entirely responsible for this bloody event, given the governments’ responsibilities in protecting the safety and well-being of the prisoners;
  2. Unfortunately, this is the second bloody event in the past six months in our country. The inhuman and degrading treatments of the prisoners on the one hand and establishment of an atmosphere of religious hatred and intolerance in the society by the government and president Emomali Rahmon’s comments on opponents as “traitors” on the other hand are the main reasons for the surfacing of such tragedies. In this context, the Tajik National Alliance demands to set up a criminal case against president Emomali Rahmon on charges of “inciting national and religious hatred” in the Article 189 of Tajikistan’s Penal Code;
  3. The Tajik National Alliance demands an independent investigation group, including representatives of the Tajik government, civil society, families and relatives of the victims of the recent events as well as representatives of United Nations and the International Committee of the Red Cross to be as soon as possible established. The group has to fully investigate the events of Vahdat prison and previously Khujand prison and present the results of the investigations to the public. Especially, given the fact the social networks and internet after the Vahdat prison’s event was restricted by Tajik authorities, this questionable action of the authorities has doubled our concerns. The Tajik National Alliance will make its efforts to draw the attentions of international organizations to this tragedy;
  4. Following the Khujand prison’s tragedy, the NAT had stated that in case of continuing degrading and inhuman treatments of prisoners and the unbearable situations in the prisons of Tajikistan, there was no doubt that similar events would be repeated in the prisons, but such warnings were unfortunately ignored by the government. Today, following the event of Vahdat prison, the authorities instead of taking actions to reform the situations in the prisons and change the treatments of the prisoners, is again repeating its previously wrong policies towards prisoners, especially the political prisoners. According the sources, a number of political prisoners, including Rahmatulloi Rajab, a member of the IRPT’s Supreme Council, are being subject to unbearable pressures. Due to this, the NAT expresses its concerns over the safety and health of the political prisoners and requests the international community and organizations not to remain silent and take the Tajik political prisoners under special care within the framework of international standards and conventions on political prisoners.

We are deeply concerned about the situations of political prisoners and we fear that they would be killed with any excuse and by criminals inside the prisons. In the end, the National Alliance of Tajikistan expresses condolences to the families of all the victims and wishes a speedy recovery to those injured.

National Alliance of Tajikistan


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