2015-11-25 14:21:00

Kyrgyz court tightens punishment for former mosque worker recruiting fighters for Syria

Osh, November 25, Interfax - The Osh Regional Court has tightened the punishment for Rashod Kamalov, a former worker of the largest mosque in southern Kyrgyzstan, Kara-Sui, a representative of the regional prosecution service, told Interfax on Wednesday.

The court took arguments of the prosecution service into consideration and tightened the punishment for Kamalov to ten years in a maximum-security penitentiary on November 24, he said.

The Osh City Court sentenced Kamalov to five years in a convict settlement in early October, although the defendant was charged with extremism, propaganda of extremist religious and terrorist organizations outlawed in Kyrgyzstan and recruitment of young fighters for Syria, the prosecution service representative said.

"The court revised the charges, dropped the aggravating circumstances and sentenced Kamalov to five years in a convict settlement, although the prosecution service demanded a severe punishment," he said.

The appeal was filed with the Osh Regional Court on October 19, he added.

The Osh regional prosecution service deems Kamalov to be an active member of clandestine religious groups operating in southern Kyrgyzstan, who has been using his position as an Islamic community leader to spread extremist ideas and to recruit fighters for Syria.