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2006 Ahmadjan Madmarov wins 2nd Front Line Award
Ahmadjan Madmarov, a human rights defender for 30 years in Uzbekistan, is the recipient of the 2nd Front Line Award for Human Rights Defenders at Risk. Ahmadjan Madmarov travelled to Dublin, at great personal risk, to receive the award, presented to him by UN Special Representative Peter Sutherland, at a special ceremony in City Hall Dublin on Friday 16 June 2006 at 8.30 am, where the welcoming address was given by Denis O’Brien, Chairman of Front Line.
On presenting the award to Ahmadjan Madmarov, Peter Sutherland said: "The most terrible part of the persecution he is facing is that three of his sons and two nephews have been imprisoned and tortured because of his work for human rights." He went on, " In sharing his story he places an obligation on all of us to do anything we can to press the Uzbek authorities to end this repression and respect human rights and I hope the European Union will continue to make this a priority in their relations with Uzbek Government."
Director of Front Line, Mary Lawlor said: " Agreeing to accept the award was a big decision for Ahmadjan. He is taking a huge risk in coming here and is afraid that when he returns the Uzbek government will fabricate evidence to accuse him of terrorism or plant drugs on him." She added:'We in Front Line pledge to stay with you Ahmadjan on your return to Uzbekistan, as you struggle with your work and we will think of you as in the words of the Palestinian Poet Mahmoud Darwish,"Here on the slopes of hills, facing the dusk and the cannon of time, close to the gardens of broken shadows,we cultivate hope."