‘Political Prisoners. Memorial’: Munirkhon Boboev, a citizen of Tajikistan convicted in Russia on charges of involvement in Hizb ut-Tahrir, is a political prisoner

 25 August 2022

Munirkhon Boboev is charged with preparing the violent overthrow of the government because Hizb ut-Tahrir supporters believe that the ideal society of the future is a worldwide Islamic caliphate

Source: Political Prisoners. Memorial

The human rights project ‘Political Prisoners. Memorial,’ in accordance with international standards, considers Munirkhon Boboev a political prisoner. He has been prosecuted solely for his involvement in the Islamic party Hizb ut-Tahrir, designated a terrorist organisation in Russia. Boboev’s prosecution violates his rights to freedom of religion and association.

We demand that Munirkhon Boboev be released immediately and the criminal charges against him be dropped.

What are the charges against Munirkhon Boboev?

Munirkhon Boboev, who was born in Tajikistan but lived and worked in Moscow, was remanded in custody on charges of involvement in the Islamic party Hizb ut-Tahrir back on 16 February 2016. However, we have only been able to study his case file now.

According to the Investigative Committee, Boboev was a member of the Moscow cell of Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami, an organisation designated as terrorist in Russia. Boboev was accused, among other things, of organising conferences of supporters of Hizb ut-Tahrir in two Moscow hotels – Izmailovo-Delta and Saliut – in 2011 and 2012, as well as participating in other party events.

On 4 October 2016, Boboev was sentenced to nine years in a strict regime penal colony on charges of preparing a violent seizure of power (Article 30, Part 1, in conjunction with Article 278, of the Russian Criminal Code).

Boboev maintains his innocence of the charges. According to him, he was a member of Hizb ut-Tahrir in the years 2005-2012, but his activities were entirely peaceful in nature.

Other members of the Moscow branch of Hizb ut-Tahrir, including Azizbek Inamov, believed by the Investigative Committee to be its head, had been sentenced to terms of imprisonment back in 2014. Memorial has also recognized them as political prisoners.

Why do we consider Boboev a political prisoner?

We have studied the case of Munirkhon Boboev and have concluded that the Investigative Committee never presented the court with evidence of preparation for a violent seizure of power. The charges against Boboev are based only on the fact of his involvement in Hizb ut-Tahrir.

Searches of Boboev’s property found no weapons, explosives or ammunition. The sole evidence of preparation for a violent seizure of power was the testimony of a classified witness who stated that another follower of Hizb ut-Tahrir had talked, in Boboev’s presence, about the need to use force to seize power.

The charges against Boboev are based on the results of dubious forensic expertise which claimed that the political views of Hizb ut-Tahrir al-Islami do not represent a theory for the building of an ideal future society, but clearly outline the stages of a real political struggle that include violent means. We consider such claims to be unsubstantiated.

The Investigative Committee’s charges and the court ruling are based on the 2003 decision of the Russian Supreme Court that designated Hizb ut-Tahrir a terrorist organisation. The human rights project ‘Political Prisoners. Memorial,’ like Memorial Human Rights Centre before it, considers this decision unlawful and unfounded.

The Supreme Court decision provides no evidence of terrorist activities by Hizb ut-Tahrir. Nevertheless, in recent years hundreds of Muslims have been sentenced to long terms of imprisonment for alleged terrorist offences on account of their involvement in this organisation.

A more detailed description of Munirkhon Boboev’s case and the position of the Human Rights Project can be found on our Telegram channel.

A full list of political prisoners in Russia is available on our temporary website.

Recognition of an individual as a political prisoner does not imply the ‘Political Prisoners. Memorial’ human rights project agrees with, or approves of, their views, statements, or actions. 

How can you help?

You can donate to support all political prisoners via the YooMoney or PayPal (helppoliticalprisoners@gmail.com) accounts of the Union of Solidarity with Political Prisoners.

Translated by Rights in Russia

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