Human Rights News

Radio Ozodlik published an audio recording of a meeting on January 25, 2018, in the Andijan District Office. In the 16-minute audio recording, the head of the district, Ulugbek Isomiddinov can be heard using obscenities to insult local farmers for not transferring money for the coating used during the sowing of cotton seeds: “Oydinbulok! [name …

On January 7-8, 2018, Akmaljon Jalolov, hokim (governor) of the Izboskan district of Andijan region, held a special session of the district council of people’s deputies to announce that farmers, who did not meet their quotas for cotton or wheat production last year, must give up their land to the state. Farmers who attended the …

In Tashkent, female employees of health clinics, schools, and kindergartens are forced to clean in low-income houses in the Sergeli district for free. Nurses complain that otherwise they are threatened with dismissal and withholding from their wages. Forced Saturday cleaning day In Tashkent, female employees of health clinics, schools, and kindergartens were forced to clean …

On December 22, 2017, Uzbek President Shavkat Mirziyoyev delivered a four-hour speech to the country’s Parliament. During most of his speech, the president criticized Uzbekistan’s current situation, addressing problems affecting the economy, health care and law enforcement as well as the increase in suicides among women and widespread corruption. He paid particular attention to corruption …

Cotton: Investigation into the Reverse Side of our T-shirts

French TV airs two-hour documentary about the Uzbek cotton industry On November 28, the French TV channel France 2, broadcast a two-hour documentary about international business dealings in the cotton industry, including insights into the dysfunctional Uzbek cotton sector. The French journalist, Sandrine Rigaud, travelled to Uzbekistan, Bangladesh and India to investigate the dark side …

Two Uzbek civil society organizations in exile, the Association for Human Rights in Central Asia and the Uzbek-German Forum for Human Rights, have written an open letter to the organizers and participants of the 2017 Global Forum for Assets Recovery to express their support to the “Civil Society Statement for Global Forum on Asset Recovery” …

Uzbek Official Unleashes Torrent of Abuse at Cotton Meeting

Intimidation, threats, and humiliation used to meet cotton quotas (Berlin, November 21, 2017) — The head of the Parkent district administration of the Tashkent region, Nematulla Abdullaev, held a 45-minute meeting on November 1, 2017, during which he used abusive and insulting language to humiliate and intimidate the heads of organizations, enterprises, and community leaders …

Article in German Magazine STERN : “Exploited”

Bettina Sengling, a German journalist, has been following Uzbekistan’s most prominent human rights activists. In a recent article, published by the German magazine STERN, she reports on forced and child labor in Uzbekistan’s cotton industry and the challenges faced by human rights activists in their courageous fight to end these practices. Based on the article by Bettina Sengling, published by …

Forced and Child Labor in Spring Fieldwork Linked to World Bank Project

Teachers, Medical Workers, Welfare Recipients Weeded Cotton Fields under Threat (Berlin, October 10, 2017)— The government of Uzbekistan forced people to work in the cotton fields during the spring fieldwork season under threat, the Uzbek-German Forum states in a report released today. The report also documents forced and child labor in a World Bank project …

Employees of Tashkent Organizations Hire Cotton Pickers at their own Expense

On September 27, 2017, activist Malokhat Eshonkulova visited cotton fields in the Dustlik district of the Djizak region where she spoke to cotton pickers.  She learned that 1,100 collectors, mostly hired by employees of various tax offices of Tashkent city, as well as the city enterprise TransYol, had arrived in the Dustlik district. One of …