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Sharifa Madrakhimova

Sharifa Madrakhimova is an Uzbekistani woman human rights defender, journalist, and respected community leader from the Fergana region. As a freelance reporter, she collaborates with various media outlets in Uzbekistan.


Human rights defenders in Uzbekistan continue to be systematically persecuted. Torture, ill-treatment, arbitrary detention, fabricated prosecutions, imprisonment and excessive force are used by law enforcement officials to prevent them from carrying out their legitimate and peaceful work in defence of human rights. The severity of the repression has contributed to a number of defenders being forced to go into exile. Human rights defenders and independent journalists continue to face physical attacks, which remain unpunished. Serious obstacles to freedom of peaceful assembly persist.

There are grave concerns for the health of several defenders who remain in long term detention. The situation in Uzbek detention facilities is in general very poor and the conditions for human rights defenders in particular are a cause for concern. According to reports by human rights activists and relatives of prisoners, prisons are overcrowded and tuberculosis and hepatitis are endemic, making even short periods of incarceration potentially life threatening. The use of torture and ill-treatment in pre-trial facilities and prisons is widespread. The government also routinely increases the prison terms of human rights defenders as they approach the end of the sentences they were initially ordered to serve, coming up with trumped-up charges of minor violations of prison discipline.