Uzbekistan jails 37 for Andijan uprising

The Uzbekistan Supreme Court has sentenced 37 men convicted in a closed trial of involvement in May's violence in the eastern province of Andijan to jail terms ranging from 10 to 18 years.

    The authorities have so far jailed 151 people for the unrest

    The statement said on Thursday: "The defendants were found guilty of carrying out premeditated murders in aggravating circumstances, terrorist acts, infringement of the constitutional system, and other serious and very serious crimes."

    The statement echoed one that accompanied the sentencing

    of dozens of other Uzbeks a day earlier.

    The court also issued a correction, saying 41 men were sentenced on Wednesday to jail terms ranging from 12 to 20 years, not 42 as previously announced.

    The latest verdicts bring the total number of people sentenced so far over the Andijan unrest to 151.

    "The defendants were found guilty of carrying out premeditated murders in aggravating circumstances"

    Supreme Court statement

    The Uzbek authorities have said that 187 people died in the violence, all due to the actions of Islamic insurgents, while human rights groups say troops opened fire and killed hundreds of civilians.

    The Uzbek government has refused calls from the European Union, the United States and the top UN human rights official for an independent international inquiry and relations between Uzbekistan and the West have soured in the aftermath of the Andijan unrest.

    The court has said the three trials in the capital, Tashkent, and Tashkent province were closed to protect victims, witnesses and information considered to be state secrets.



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