Press Office

Wednesday 29 Oct 2014

Press Release

BBC journalist tortured in Tajikistan

BBC World Service is concerned about the treatment of its correspondent, Urunboy Usmonov, after details of torture emerged during his trial which commenced this week in Khojand, Tajikistan.

When questioned, Mr Usmonov told the court that he'd been tortured in custody following his arrest on 13 June this year, including beatings and security officers burning his arms with cigarettes. He also said he'd been forced to sign a confession which had been dictated to him.

The BBC condemns the torture of Mr Usmonov and has asked the Tajikistan authorities to investigate these incidents.

The BBC has consistently maintained Mr Usmonov's innocence and regards the allegations as completely unfounded. Meetings and interviews with people representing all shades of opinion are part of the work of any BBC journalist.

The BBC has asked the Tajik authorities to drop all charges against Mr Usmonov so he can return to his work as a highly respected journalist and writer.

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