Azimjon Askarov

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The Kyrgyzstan Supreme Court today upheld journalist and human rights defender Azimjon Askarov’s life sentence in prison. (Photo: Askarov family)

CPJ condemns Kyrgyz supreme court decision upholding Azimjon Askarov’s life sentence

New York, May 13, 2020 – In response to today’s decision by Kyrgyzstan’s Supreme Court to uphold journalist and human rights defender Azimjon Askarov’s life sentence and deny his final appeal, the Committee to Protect Journalists issued the following statement:

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A National Guard officer is seen in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on March 26, 2020. CPJ recently spoke with several people close to imprisoned journalists in Europe and Central Asia about the challenges of observing Ramadan behind bars. (AFP/Vyacheslav Oseledko)

COVID-19 lockdowns pose challenges for imprisoned journalists observing Ramadan

This year, the Islamic month of Ramadan, which started on April 24 and will continue through May 23, is particularly challenging for Muslim journalists in jail to observe safely, their family members and friends told CPJ.

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Journalist Azimjon Askarov has been imprisoned in Kyrgyzstan since 2010 on trumped-up charges. Photo provided by Askarov's family.

Kyrgyz president must release journalist Azimjon Askarov amid COVID-19 epidemic

CPJ today joined eight other human rights and press freedom organizations to call for the immediate release of journalist and human rights defender Azimjon Askarov, who has been serving a life sentence in retaliation for his reporting since June 2010.

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Kyrgyz President Sooronbay Jeenbekov is seen in Bishkek on December 25, 2019. Khadicha Askarova, the wife of imprisoned journalist Azimjon Askarov, recently wrote a letter to Jeenbekov pleading for the journalist’s release. (AFP/Vyacheslav Oseledko)

Wife of imprisoned journalist Azimjon Askarov calls for his release as COVID-19 hits Kyrgyzstan

On March 11, Khadicha Askarova, the wife of imprisoned journalist Azimjon Askarov, wrote a letter to Kyrgyzstan President Sooronbay Jeenbekov pleading for the journalist’s release.

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Journalist Azimjon Askarov is seen at a court in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on October 11, 2016. The country’s Supreme Court is set to hear Askarov’s appeal tomorrow. (AP/Vladimir Voronin)

Kyrgyzstan Supreme Court to hear appeal of journalist Azimjon Askarov

New York, February 24, 2020 — Kyrgyzstan authorities should not contest the appeal of journalist and human rights defender Azimjon Askarov and should release him immediately, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today.

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CPJ launches 2019 #FreeThePress campaign

Instagram campaign to focus on jailed journalists in Kyrgyzstan, Egypt, Eritrea, Vietnam, and elsewhere New York, December 2, 2019–The Committee to Protect Journalists today launched its annual #FreeThePress campaign to raise awareness of jailed journalists globally. The campaign will highlight the plight of several journalists via CPJ’s Instagram account.

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CPJ calls on UN Secretary-General Guterres to push for release of Azimjon Askarov in Kyrgyzstan

CPJ writes to UN Secretary-General António Guterres urging him to call on the government of Kyrgyzstan to release unjustly imprisoned journalist and human rights defender Azimjon Askarov.

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Journalist Azimjon Askarov is seen in a courtroom in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, on October 11, 2016. A court today upheld his life sentence in prison. (AP/Vladimir Voronin, file)

Kyrgyz court upholds life sentence for Azimjon Askarov

Washington, D.C., July 30, 2019 — The Committee to Protect Journalists expressed deep disappointment and concern over today’s court decision in Kyrgyzstan to uphold the life sentence of journalist and human rights defender Azimjon Askarov.

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Kyrgyz journalist and rights advocate Azimjon Askarov is seen on January 24, 2017. CPJ recently signed on to a letter to Frederica Mogherini, the European Union's high representative for foreign affairs and security policy, urging for his release. (AP/Vladimir Voronin)

CPJ joins letter to EU’s Mogherini urging release of Kyrgyz journalist Askarov

CPJ joined seven other human rights and freedom of expression groups in writing a letter, made public today, calling on the government of Kyrgyzstan to release journalist and rights advocate Azimjon Askarov.

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Kyrgyzstan journalist Azimjon Askarov and his wife, Khadicha, pictured during a family vacation in Arslanbob in the summer of 2009. 'This was Azimjon's last summer of freedom,' Khadicha told CPJ. (Askarov family)

Harsh conditions for Askarov, the Kyrgyz journalist UN says should be freed

On a recent morning in Bazar-Korgon, southern Kyrgyzstan, Khadicha Askarova was giving hasty instructions to her daughter about what needed to be packed. They were about to set off: first for the capital Bishkek, some 600km from where they live, and then another 70km to a prison colony where her husband, Azimjon Askarov, was transferred…

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