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Unveiling the Controversy: Tajikistan Labels Opposition Group's Website as "Extremist"

Unveiling the Controversy: Tajikistan Labels Opposition Group's Website as "Extremist"

By WAQAS AHMADPublished 9 months ago 3 min read
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Unveiling the Controversy: Tajikistan Labels Opposition Group's Website as "Extremist"
Photo by Ilya Pavlov on Unsplash

Alright, let's dive into the controversy surrounding Tajikistan labeling an opposition group's website as "extremist."

  • Tajikistan, a country in Central Asia, has recently sparked a heated debate by categorizing an opposition group's website as "extremist." This decision has raised concerns about freedom of speech and government control over online content.
  • The labeling of the website as "extremist" has ignited discussions about censorship and the boundaries of expression in Tajikistan. Critics argue that this move is a suppression tactic used by the government to silence dissenting voices and limit political opposition.
  • On the other hand, supporters of Tajikistan's decision claim that it is necessary to protect national security and prevent the spread of harmful ideologies through online platforms.
  • As this controversy unfolds, it brings attention to broader issues surrounding internet regulations and human rights in Tajikistan. It prompts us to question how governments should balance their responsibility for public safety with respecting citizens' right to express their opinions freely.
  • Stay tuned as we explore different perspectives on this controversial issue and shed light on its potential implications for both Tajikistan and the global community.
  • ABU DHABI -- The Prosecutor-General's Office in Tajikistan reports that the country's Supreme Court declared the website New Tajikistan 2, which is a part of the opposition Group 24 organization, to be extremist and outlawed its operations there.
  • In addition, the announcement from July 26 noted that Tajikistan has disabled and barred all social media accounts, including YouTube, for more than 20 creators of the New Tajikistan 2 website. Any cooperation with the prohibited sites and their writers, according to the Prosecutor-General's Office, is punishable by up to eight years in jail.
  • Suhrob Zafar, the self-exiled head of Group 24, told RFE/RL that the authorities' action will not have an impact on the operations of his movement or its website.
  • 2014 saw the strict supervision of the former Soviet country outlaw Group 24, which it branded as extreme and terrorist. The movement's creator, billionaire Umarali Quvatov, was killed in Istanbul in March 2015.
  • Invoking "the preservation of Tajikistan's constitutional order, security, and sovereignty," Tajik authorities this week declared the well-known Pamir Daily News website to be radical and banned it.
  • The Committee to Protect Journalists, located in New York, denounced the action and urged Dushanbe to change its mind.
  • International human rights organizations have attacked Tajik President Emomali Rahmon, who has ruled the Central Asian country with an iron grip for over 30 years, for his administration's apparent contempt for independent media, religious liberties, civil society, and political plurality.
  • On allegations of disseminating false information, taking part in extremist group activities, and cooperating with prohibited organizations, Tajik courts last year sentenced seven journalists and bloggers to jail terms ranging from seven years to 21 years. According to the journalists, those who support them, and human rights organizations, the accusations are unfounded and politically motivated.
  • nations of the United States and the European Union have urged the Tajik government to withdraw all accusations against the journalists and free them. International human rights organizations, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, and these nations have also made this request.
  • Tajikistan received a score of 8/100 and the "Not Free" designation in Freedom House's 2022 Global Freedom Status, placing it 152nd on Reporters Without Borders' 2022 World Press Freedom Index.
  • Conclusion:
  • The opposition group's website being classified as extremist in Tajikistan reflects the continuous hostilities between the ruling party and political dissidents. Concerns regarding the country's repression of political opposition and the situation of media freedom have increased as a result of this action. The international community must keep a careful eye on the situation's evolution and fight to defend Tajikistan's democratic values, freedom of expression, and human rights as it develops. In order to have a society that is inclusive and healthy, everyone must have the freedom to voice their viewpoints and have a productive debate.

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WAQAS AHMAD

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