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2018-11-13

Death toll in Tajik prison riot grows to at least 50: government sources

Caravanserai

DUSHANBE -- At least 50 inmates were killed in a riot that erupted late November 7 at a maximum security prison in Khujand, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported Tuesday (November 13).

"Islamic State" (IS) last week claimed responsibility for the unrest at a high-security prison where many inmates are imprisoned for crimes related to terrorism and extremism. Many of them are affiliated with groups banned in Tajikistan, such as IS, Hizb ut-Tahrir and others.

Anonymous sources from an unspecified state agency Monday (November 12) showed an RFE/RL correspondent a list of at least 50 inmates they said were killed in the riot. The list more than doubled the previously reported death toll of 24, which included two prison guards.

IS supporters convicted of extremism and terrorism organised the unrest, state-connected sources speaking anonymously said November 9.

The Tajik government has not made any official statement about the incident. The local administration in Khujand confirmed the riot without giving further information.

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