Three high-profile abduction cases reported in Tajikistan over the past two years
Three high-profile abduction cases have been reported in Tajikistan over the past two years.
Two cases of abduction of a person causing public concern have become known in Tajikistan in recent days. The lack of information about the fate of the victims increases anxiety. Along with the recent incidents, another case comes to mind that ended tragically.
Abduction of banker
Tajik law enforcement authorities have reported on the abduction of the first deputy head of one of Tajikistan's largest commercial bank, Open Joint-Stock Company Orienbank, Shuhrat Ismatulloyev.
The Interior Ministry says the 49-year-old Ismatulloyev was forced into a black Hyundai Sonata automobile by four unidentified individuals on the evening of June 23 when he left his house on the Zakariyoi Rozi Street in Dushanbe’s Ismoili Somoni district and taken to an unknown location.
The police have determined that the license plate of the car was fake.
The Prosecutor-General’s Office has launched an investigation into the abduction of Shuhrat Ismatulloyev; an investigation is under way.
The Interior Ministry announced a US$30,000 reward for information leading to finding the banker.
Radio Liberty’s Tajik Service, known locally as Radio Ozodi, reported on June 26 that Shuhrat Ismatulloyev is the brother of Dilshod Ismatullozoda, the former head of Tajik Air (Tajikistan’s national air carrier), and one of the people close to Hasan Asadullozoda, the head of Orienbank and the brother-in-law of Tajik President Emomali Rahmon (his wife’s brother).
He has reportedly been the first deputy head of Orienbank for years and according to the people in the know, it was Shuhrat Ismatulloyev who actually handled Orienbank’s affairs.
Orienbank is one of the oldest banks in Tajikistan, and one of its largest financial institutions. The bank is currently led by Hasan Asadullozoda.
Abduction of university lecturer
Tajik Prosecutor-General’s Office reported on June 24 that the chief of the Department of Analysis and International Relations at the Interior Ministry’s Organized Control Directorate, Lieutenant-Colonel Akmal Yusufzoda, and his relative Ismoiljon Shukurov were arrested on June 15 on suspicion of abduction of a person.
Criminal proceedings have been instituted against them under the provisions of Article 130 (2) of Tajikistan’s Penal Code – abduction of a person by a group of persons by prior conspiracy, using the force dangerous to health and life; an investigation is under.
According to a report released by the Prosecutor-General’s Office, Yusufzoda and Shukurov forced Ismoiljon Rahmonov, a lecturer at the Tajik State University of Commerce, into Yusufzoda’s official car Hyundai Accent on the night of June 12. They reportedly tied Rahmonov’s hands together and drove towards the Dushanbe-Khujand highway.
They reportedly stopped the car at the 118th kilometer of the Dushanbe-Khujand highway near Chorei village in Ani district (Sughd province). They pulled Rahmonov out of the car and threw him into the Fon Daryo River and fled the scene of the incident.
Rahmonov has not been found yet. Employees of the Emergencies Committee and other relevant agencies have been involved in the operation for searching the 38-yer-old Ismoiljon Rahmonov, the Prosecutor-General’s Office reported.
According to the Prosecutor-General’s Office, the incident has stemmed from jealousy. Rahmonov and Yusufzoda's wife work at the same university. Rahmonov teaches management at the university and Yusufzoda's wife teaches English.
Abduction and brutal torture of second wife in Dushanbe
A 32-year-old Madina Mahmadjonova, the alleged second wife of Parviz (Lutfullo) Davlatov, 47, a manager at one of the city branches of a major mobile phone operator in Tajikistan, was reported missing on August 25, 2021 and 14 hours later, she was taken to hospital with serious injuries in a coma.
Madina Mahmadjonova worked as an accountant at the same branch until the summer 2021 when Parviz Davlatov fired her -- allegedly under pressure from his wife.
On August 25, Madina was allegedly attacked and brutally beaten Aziza Davlatova, who accused the victim of having a romantic relationship with her husband Parviz Davlatov for more than two years.
Madina was admitted to hospital on August 26 “unconscious, with grave injuries” and apparent signs of strangulation. She suffered from brain damage due to a lack of oxygen as the result of strangulation. Madina Mahmadjonova died in hospital on December 15, 2021.
Aziza Davlatova, the main suspect in the torture of Madina Mahmadjonova, was detained in November 2021 along with her husband, Parviz Davlatov, who was charged with torturing his wife.
The initial decision to close the case backfired after women’s rights activists took to social media to demand justice for the victim, Madina Mahmadjonova. They shared photos showing the victim’s horrific injuries and demanded answers from officials.
It is to be noted that Parviz Davlatov’s family is said to have high-placed political connections through his father, Davlatali Davlatzoda, the former first deputy chairman of the ruling People’s Democratic Party of Tajikistan (PDPT). Davlatzoda has held many other high-profile posts in Emomali Rahmon’s government.
Outraged Dushanbe residents signed an open letter about the case to President Emomali Rahmon and Dushanbe Mayor Rustam Emomali, who is also Chairman of the Majlisi Milli (Tajikistan’s upper chamber of parliament).
Rustam Emomali ordered a new probe that saw the couple being arrested and formally charged. Two high-ranked officers from the city’s police and prosecutors’ office – district police chief Zafar Ismoilzoda and deputy district prosecutor Suhrob Salimzoda -- were also dismissed from their posts for allegedly mishandling the case.
The case of the brutal beating by a well-connected woman of her husband’s alleged second wife moved to the Supreme Court of Tajikistan on November 18, 2021.
The Supreme Court sentenced Parviz Davlatov to eight years in prison on December 14. But amnesty was applied on him and his jail term was cut to five years and four months. The sentence followed his convictions on charges of bigamy, torture and incitement to suicide.
Aziza Davlatova was sentenced to eleven years in prison on December 28, 2021 after being found guilty of attempted murder, while Madina Mahmadjonova died on December 15. The amnesty was applied on her and her jail term was cut to ten years.