Prove They Are Alive!
  For Democracy and Human Rights in Turkmenistan
Statement on the Death in Custody of Begmurad Otuzov

The Prove They Are Alive! campaign

The International Community Must Take Immediate and Strong Action on the Problem of Enforced Disappearances in Turkmenistan.

We have learned that the former First Deputy Prosecutor General and the former Head of the Investigative Department of the National Security Committee of Turkmenistan, Begmurad Otuzov, died in custody in early February 2018, after more than 15 and a half years in full isolation in Ovadan Depe prison. During all these years, he had no contact with the outside world, including his family, lawyers, medical care providers, or international human rights representatives. His body was released to his relatives for burial, and according to the Chronicles of Turkmenistan, it weighed just 45 kilograms. >>

The only way to solve the problem of the disappeared persons is to prove they are alive

Prove They Are Alive!

On 28 February, an article was posted on Radio Azatlyks website based on information received from an anonymous source who alleges having seen Konstantin Shikhmuradov free when meeting him in August 2016 in Garabogaz (Bekdash). The source asserts that Konstantin, 15 years after his trial and conviction in January 2003, is currently not in prison but lives in a settlement in that remote region of Turkmenistan, is employed, has no complaints about his fate and even has been able to travel to Ashgabat to attend the funerals of his father 14 years ago and his mother 10 years ago.

This source also claims that along with Konstantin Shikhmuradov, some other prisoners sentenced to long prison terms after the 25 November 2002 events also live in the same settlement at Bekdash where they are totally free, employed and earning a salary and living in rented apartments.

We consider this information to be false, and its appearance to be the Turkmen authorities provocation by cynically taking advantage of this authoritative media outlet. A few facts prove this information untrue. First, it clearly contradicts the official data on the verdicts handed down to Konstantin >>

15 Years of Secrecy and Despair


Urgent International Actions are Needed to End Disappearances in Turkmen Prisons

Appeal of the Turkmen public to participating States of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe in connection with the 15th anniversary of the OSCE Moscow Mechanism report on Turkmenistan. February 24, 2018

Fifteen years ago, ten participating States of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe invoked the OSCE Moscow Mechanism regarding Turkmenistan. It was the international communitys landmark response to the large-scale repression launched by the countrys authorities against hundreds of people suspected of involvement in what the Turkmen government described as an assassination attempt on President Niyazov.

Under brutal torture, people were forced to confess to many crimes they did not commit. As a result, in early 2003, more than 60 suspects were found guilty >>

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