Sat, May

political prisoners
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Uzbekistan: Re: imprisoned writer Mamadali Makhmudov
To: Mr Laurent Fabius,
Minister of Foreign Affairs of France
Mr. Laurent Fabius,
For 14 years one of the best Uzbek writers Mamadali Makhmudov has been spending in prisons of Uzbekistan. He is a citizen of Uzbekistan. He is 72 years old. All of his literary works are devoted to the history of his home country and cultural and every-day life features of the people of Turkestan – historical region of Central Asia, which Uzbekistan is part of.
In February 1999 the writer was sentenced to a long term of imprisonment upon fabricated charges. During the investigation Makhmudov was subjected to torture, he was also deprived of food and sleep and placed in the punishment cell for numerous times. He managed to inform the outer world about it in an open letter in April 2003. Open letter of the imprisoned writer Mamadali Makhmudov (Evril TURON) to the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov.
14 November 2012 Mamadali Makhmudov’s daughter had a meeting with him in the colony-hospital UYa 64/18 of the Tashkent city. He was brought to the meeting with a convoy. The guards stayed with them in the same room during the meeting. His daughter saw a deep wound on Mamadali Makhmudov’s head, but he did not comment on the cause of the wound. He only said that he had a high blood pressure, 200 over 150 and general weakness. Recently the imprisoned writer sent a letter home and asked for medicines for throat inflammation. The several years he cannot do without nasal drops, he has difficulty breathing without it. His relatives do not know what happened to him and why he had a wound on his head.  A few years ago doctors diagnosed him with tuberculosis.  His daughter said that the writer looked weak and emaciated.
16 February 2013 the imprisonment term under the 1999 sentence has finished. However, on 11 February 2013 he was transferred to the Tashkent prison for defendants under investigation and those waiting for transportation to prison after court decision. Relatives have been told that investigation was under way. Mamadali Makhmudov is being denied to see his family.
We are deeply concerned about the fate of the writer Mamadali Makhmudov. Being elderly and ill he is in need of constant medical help and care of his family.
Based on the principle of freedom of expression enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights we call upon you to urge the Government of Uzbekistan to free the writer Mamadali Makhmudov.
With respect,
Sergey Ignatyev, “Arts and Human Rights” Project Coordinator – AHRCA
Jodgor Obid, poet, Austria
Safar Bekjan, writer, Switzerland
Dilorom Iskhakova, poetess, Uzbekistan