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Päätöslauselmaesitys - B8-0770/2016Päätöslauselmaesitys
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MOTION FOR A RESOLUTION on the situation of prisoners of conscience in Tajikistan

7.6.2016 - (2016/2754(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 135 of the Rules of Procedure

Urmas Paet, Izaskun Bilbao Barandica, Marielle de Sarnez, Ilhan Kyuchyuk, Valentinas Mazuronis, Beatriz Becerra Basterrechea, Petras Auštrevičius, Filiz Hyusmenova, Pavel Telička, Nedzhmi Ali, Dita Charanzová, Martina Dlabajová, José Inácio Faria, Fredrick Federley, Nathalie Griesbeck, Marian Harkin, Ivan Jakovčić, Louis Michel, Javier Nart, Maite Pagazaurtundúa Ruiz, Carolina Punset, Frédérique Ries, Robert Rochefort, Marietje Schaake, Jasenko Selimovic, Hannu Takkula, Ivo Vajgl, Hilde Vautmans, Cecilia Wikström, Paavo Väyrynen, María Teresa Giménez Barbat, Ulrike Müller on behalf of the ALDE Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0755/2016

Menettely : 2016/2754(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on the situation of prisoners of conscience in Tajikistan


The European Parliament,

-having regard to its previous resolution on Tajikistan of 17 September 2009,


-having regard to its report on the implementation and review of the EU-Central Asia Strategy of 13 April 2016,

-having regard to the Council conclusions on the EU Strategy for Central Asia of 22 June 2015,

-having regard to the EU-Tajikistan Partnership and Cooperation Agreement of 1 January 2010,


-having regard to art. 7, 8 and 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights;


-having regard to art. 9, 10 and 14 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights;


-having regard to The United Nations Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers;


-having regard to Tajikistan's Action Plan for implementation of the recommendations issued by the Committee against Torture of August 2013;


-having regard to Freedom House's annual scoreboard;


-having regard to Transparency International's Corruption Perceptions Index;


-having regard to Rule 135 of its Rules of Procedure,



A. whereas on 17 September 2009, the European Parliament gave its assent to a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) between the EC and the Republic of Tajikistan; whereas PCA was signed in 2004 and came into force on 1 January 2010;

B. whereas since 1992, the EU - Tajikistan cooperation has expanded to a large amount of areas, among others human rights and democracy;

C. whereas the EU has a vital interest in stepping up political, economic and security cooperation with the Central Asian region via a strong and open EU‑Tajikistan relationship based on rule of law, democracy and human rights;

D. Whereas Tajikistan, according to Freedom House, is characterized by intolerance of political pluralism, misuse of the court system to neutralize voices of dissent, widespread violations of human rights, and a corrupt and non-transparent judicial system where torture is used as a means to extract confessions;


E. Whereas Tajikistan, according to Transparency International, ranks as one of the most corrupt countries in the world;


F. Whereas a serious governmental crackdown on opposition activists, lawyers and journalists following peaceful criticism of the government has taken place in Tajikistan in recent years;


G. Whereas Abubakr Azizkhodzhaev was detained in February 2016 for   publicly speaking out about corruption and nepotism at the very highest level of government in Tajikistan and has allegedly been the subject of mistreatment and torture and has had very limited access to his family during his detention;


H. Whereas several lawyers, among others Shukhrat Kudratov, Fakhriddin Zokirov, Buzurgmehr Yorov, Nuriddin Makhkamov, Dilbar Dodojonova and the sons of opposition lawyer Izkhak Tabarov, Firuz and Daler Tabarov, have been arrested or imprisoned since 2014;


I. Whereas the opposition parties Group 24 and the moderate Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan were forcedly closed in October 2014 and September 2015, respectively;


J. Whereas the leader of Group 24, Umarali Kuvvatov, was shot dead in his exile in Istanbul in March 2015, and other opposition figures have been harassed or kidnapped outside Tajikistan;


K. Whereas the law "on public Associations" makes it mandatory for NGOs to declare all grants received from donors abroad or from international organisations to a specialized register at the Ministry of Justice; whereas public foundations, which are not covered by the Law “On Public Associations” but registered with tax authorities, are also affected with the Tax Committee having recently started rejecting registration applications and referring them to the Ministry of Justice, having no competence over them according to national law;


L. Whereas a new law on the Bar Association adopted in November 2015 requires all lawyers to renew their legal licences with the Ministry of Justice and to retake the bar examination every five years; whereas lawyers are concerned that the test is used to exclude those defending politically sensitive cases;


M. Whereas the government uses restrictive media legislation and regulations to curb independent reporting and is frequently blocking online media outlets and social media networks;


1. Stresses the importance of relations between the EU and Tajikistan and of strengthening cooperation in all areas; highlights the EU interest in a sustainable relationship with Tajikistan in terms of political and economic cooperation;

2. Deeply regrets the lack of respect for basic standards on human rights, rule of law and independence of and fairness in the judicial system in Tajikistan;


3. Calls on Tajikistan to comply with its international human rights and rule of law commitments, to guarantee the transparency in court proceedings and a right to a fair trial, and to review the newly adopted Law on the Bar Association; reminds Tajikistan that even in the pursuit of security operations, the fundamental freedoms of Tajik citizens must be guaranteed.


4. Condemns the harassment and persecution of critical journalists, independent media and private citizens expressing their points of view and the use of politically motivated charges against these critics; condemns the restrictions against civil society organisations, notably those receiving foreign funding; equally condemns the blocking of social media;


5. Calls for the immediate release of Abubakr Azizkhodzhaev, Shukhrat Kudratov, Buzurgmehr Yorov, Nuriddin Makhkamov and Dilbar Dodojonova and for the release of all other lawyers, activists, journalists and others critical of the government imprisoned and detained on politically motivated charges;


6. Calls for a fully independent investigation of the arrest and subsequent conditions during imprisonment of Abubakr Azizkhodzhaev and calls for all officials found responsible for any mistreatment to be held accountable;


7. Strongly condemns the widespread use of torture and mistreatment in the judicial system in Tajikistan and urges the Tajik government to implement its Action Plan for implementation of the recommendations issued by the Committee against Torture of August 2013;


8. Calls on the Tajik government to ensure that all lawyers, including those defending human rights activists, IRPT members, victims of torture and clients accused of extremism, are able to conduct their work freely, without fear of threats or harassment;


9. Strongly urges the Tajik authorities to engage actively in the fight against corruption, nepotism and misuse of power;


10. Calls on the VP/High Representative and the EEAS to closely monitor developments in Tajikistan, to prioritise the promotion of democratic transformation and respect for human rights in Tajikistan and to offer assistance where needed and asked for;


11. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission, the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the Member States' governments and parliaments, the President, government and parliament of Tajikistan, and the Parliamentary Assemblies of the Council of Europe and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe.