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HRW: Kyrgyz authorities should protect Murat Tungishbaev from extradition

The Kyrgyz authorities should protect Murat Tungishbaev from being extradited or forced back to Kazakhstan. The human right organization Human Rights Watch said in a statement.

Recall, on May 10, the State Committee for National Security detained a citizen of the Republic of Kazakhstan Murat Tungishbaev on suspicion of belonging to the movement «Democratic Choice of Kazakhstan.» The special services searched the apartment of the Kazakh citizen on the basis of a decision of Almaty court.

Kyrgyzstan’s prosecutor general’s office on May 21 granted Kazakhstan’s extradition request for Murat Tungishbaev.

According to Human Rights Watch, Tungishbaev will face a serious risk of torture and ill-treatment and of politically motivated prosecution in Kazakhstan.

«Kazakhstan has a long record of trying to silence people who have critical, dissenting views,» said Mihra Rittmann, Europe and Central Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch. «The Kyrgyz authorities should protect Murat Tungishbaev from being extradited or forced back to Kazakhstan, where he would face politically motivated charges, as well as risk of torture.»

As the human rights defenders say, SCNS should facilitate the State Migration Service’s urgent access to Tungishbaev to begin processing his asylum claim. And until his asylum claim is reviewed in full, Kyrgyzstan should not extradite or expel Tungishbaev under any circumstances.

«It’s highly worrying that the migration authorities have not been given access to Tungishbaev in detention,» Rittmann said. «It is Tungishbaev’s right to claim asylum given his fears of persecution, and Kyrgyzstan’s obligation to register and give full consideration to his claim.»

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