Posted by: becketfund | April 8, 2008

Kazakhstan: Muslims Face Difficulties in Obtaining Fair Trials, Sentences

SHYMKENT – Kazakhstan’s Muslims report that they face difficulties in obtaining fair trials and sentences, often for crimes they had no involvement in, as reported by Forum 18 on April 8. Many suspect that the Kazakh government deliberately hands down heavy sentences in order to “discredit Islam and believers”, by making examples out of certain members of the Muslim community. In February, fourteen Muslims were given prison sentences ranging from 14 to 19 and a half years, while a fifteenth received a sentence of three years of “corrective labor”. Kazakhstan’s secret police, the KNB, claim that the fifteen were plotting to blow up a KNB office in Shymkent, an allegation which has never been proven.

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