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3-06-2015, 16:14

Tajik prosecutor-general's office launches investigation into former OMON commander

Avesta.Tj | 03.06.2015 | The Tajik prosecutor-general's office said on Wednesday that criminal proceedings were instituted against Halimov Gulmurod Salimovich, the former commander of special police unit (OMON) on May 28 under the provisions of three articles of Tajikistan’s Penal Code: Article 305 – high treason; Article 187 (2) – participation in a criminal group; and Article 401 – illegal participation in foreign armed conflicts.


On the same day Gulmurod Halimov has been put on the international wanted list.


The prosecutor-general's office also said that the report released by some media sources that a special commission comprising representatives from the country’s law enforcement agencies has been set up to establish the facts of Halimov’s case does not correspond to the facts.


This commissions was reportedly set up in early April to investigate cases of participation of Tajik nationals in foreign armed conflicts.


And information that some of Halimov’s colleagues allegedly also joined the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) group together with him does not correspond to the facts; on contrary, "all Halimov’s former colleagues strongly condemned his dishonorable action.”


The special police unit commander Gulmurod Halimov disappeared on April 23 after telling his wife he would be traveling on business for three days.


Missing for weeks Halimov reappeared on the Internet, claiming that he has joined the Islamic State (IS) militant group in protest at official restrictions on religious observance back home.


He calls for jihad in online video posted on YouTube on May 27 and singled out Tajikistan's crackdown on Islamic dress and limitations on public prayer as reasons for his radicalization.


Halimov, a father of eight, says that Tajik labor migrants "must stop serving infidels" in Russia and join IS in Syria and Iraq in order to establish Shari'a law in other countries, including Tajikistan.

In his video statement, made mostly in Russian, Halimov calls democracy "a religion of infidels" and describes Americans as "pigs," threatening that "we will come to you to kill you all."

The authenticity of the video could not be immediately confirmed, and it's not clear where the clip was shot. The 12-minute recording was removed from YouTube several hours after it appeared there on May 27.

In the video, Halimov says he joined the Tajik police force in the early 1990s and attended training courses in Moscow and Baton Rouge, Louisiana, in the last several years.