Uzbekistan: Human rights defender Chuyan Mamatkulov subjected to torture

 Human rights defender Chuyan Mamatkulov was beaten 20 times on the head with a baton and then was placed in a solitary confinement treated with chloramine. His life and health are at risk. Intervention by the international community is necessary.
State of Chuyan Mamatkulov’s health is alarming. He sustained a head injury as a result of blows to his head, he underwent a surgery. Mamatkulov is suffering from severe headaches for more than a month. During this time he was given only a few tablets of paracetamol, he is not under a medical observation.

Chuyan Mamatkulov previously had one of the bones of his skull removed, so he had a 2nd  group disability. Three weeks after his arrest, on 25 September 2012, under pressure from prosecutors and investigators, he was deprived of his disabiled status. For two years in prison Mamatkulov lost his teeth and began to suffer from pain in the lower back and legs, especially in cold weather.

In effect, an official of administration of the colony UYA 61/29 in Navoi Region is commiting extrajudicial killing. His real name and rank cannot be established, he calls himself Sherali.

Chuyan MAMATKULOV was born on 15 January 1970 in the village of Kasan of the Kashkadarya region of Uzbekistan. He is married and has two young daughters.

Since 2004, he is a member of the Kashkadarya department of the Human Rights Society of Uzbekistan - HRSU headed by Talib Yakubov.

In 2000 he was dismissed from the Armed Forces of Uzbekistan. Mamatkulov had four disciplinary actions taken against him and then he was fired. However, he was not afforded a chance to familiarise himself with the charges against him. Attempts to appeal this direct violation of the labor code failed. 

In 2005 Chuyan Mamatkulov was first to file a suit against the President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov. He claimed that as supreme commander, on 9 October 1996, Karimov approved the disciplinary regulations of the armed forces of Uzbekistan and therefore, is directly responsible for the violation of the rights of servicemen. Mamatkulov’s position was supported by Uzbek human rights activists and independent journalists. A judicial authorities under various pretexts rejected his appeal. In this long lawsuit Mamatkulov took a principled stand.

On 29 August 2012 he was arrested.

On 8 February 2013, the Kashkadarya Regional Criminal Court sentenced him to 10 years of imprisonment. He was charged under Articles 137, part 2 subsections "b", "c" (Kidnapping); 138, part 1 (Forced false imprisonment); 159, part 1 (encroachment on the constitutional order of the Republic of Uzbekistan); 168, part 2, subsection "c" (fraud), 228, part 2, subsection "b" (Production, forgery of documents, stamps, seals, forms, and their sale or use); 238, part 3 (Perjury); 244 (manufacture or distribution of materials containing a threat to public security and public order). He is serving a sentence in the colony 64/29 in the Navoi region.

Chuyan Mamatkulov’s case requires urgent intervention of the High Commissioner for Human Rights and other international bodies.

It is urgent to:
 ensure the humane treatment of prisoners and stop Chuyanov Mamatkulov’s   torture;
 provide him with adequate medical care;
 reconsider his case before an independent and impartial Court

On 20 April 2014 Chuyan Mamatkulov tried to send another appeal of his case, this time to the chairman of the National Security Service, Rustam Inoyatov. This appeal was received by Asror Radjapov, chief of the Kashkadarya region security services the SNB. The human rights defender denies the accusations and says that they are brought by order of the authorities and describes all of the obstacles faced when trying to appeal the verdict.

Chuyan Mamatkulov is often tortured and forced to accept the accusation. He is beaten by not only members of the administration. There are also convicts who, on the instructions of the authorities, organise provocations against the political prisoners, or even perform contract killings.

Chuyan Mamatkulov’s last family visit was on 19 June 2014. Instead of a whole day, Mamatkulov and his wife were given only five hours for the meeting. According to his wife, his health is very poor. He is detained in conditions comparable to torture. Such moral and physical torture is particularly pernicious for a sick man as Mamatkulov.

The Association for Human Rights in Central Asia believes that, in respect Chuyan Mamatkulov, the following legal provisions are violated:
  • Тhe Constitution of the Republic of Uzbekistan, namely:
     — Article 26 – «No one may be subject to torture, violence or any other cruel or humiliating treatment»;
     — Article 29 – «Everyone shall be guaranteed freedom of thought, speech and convictions»;
  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, namely: 
     — Article 7 – «No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment»;
Article 19 – «1. Everyone shall have the right to hold opinions without interference»;

  • Declaration on the Right and Responsibility of Individuals, Groups and Organs of Society to Promote and Protect Universally Recognised Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
  • Body of Principles for the Protection of All Persons under Any Form of Detention or Imprisonment:
   — Principle 1 – «All persons under any form of detention or imprisonment shall be treated in a humane manner and with respect for the inherent dignity of the human person»;
   — Principle 6 – «No person under any form of detention or imprisonment shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. No circumstance whatever may be invoked as a justification for torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment»;
   — Principle 21 – «1. It shall be prohibited to take undue advantage of the situation of a detained or imprisoned person for the purpose of compelling him to confess, to incriminate himself otherwise or to testify against any other person. 2. No detained person while being interrogated shall be subject to violence, threats or methods of interrogation which impair his capacity of decision or his judgement. <..> ».

The Association for Human Rights in Central Asia - AHRCA requests governments, international and intergovernmental organisations to urge the government of Uzbekistan to provide Chuyan Mamatkulov with emergency medical assistance, including the provision of access to a dentist. This appeal was also sent to:
 UN High Commissioner for Human Rights;
 UN Special Rapporteur on Torture;
 EU Special Rapporteur on the countries of Central Asia;
 EU special rapporteur on human rights;
 Governments of democratic countries;
 International human rights organisations.