Cotton pickers on the field © UGF 2015

Employees of Tashkent’s public institutions are forced to harvest cotton in the Jizzakh Region

On September 13, a group of medical workers from the Clinic No.13 located at the Mirzo-Ulugbek district in Tashkent was mobilized to harvest cotton for 10 days in the Jizzakh region.

Previously, the Uzbek Human Rights Alliance reported several times that, starting from September 10, workers of schools and hospitals in Tashkent were sent off to harvest cotton in the Tashkent Region.

According to the “anti human-trafficking law” of Uzbekistan, the National Security Service is responsible for taking actions against human trafficking in country.

On September 13, human rights activist Elena Urlaeva made a call to the Administration branch of the National Security Service in the Tashkent region (+998712529011), and reported on facts of human exploitation of medical and school workers for the cotton harvest.

The person on duty has accepted the application and told Ms. Urlaeva that she would soon get a call back from NSS officers that would be taking actions against the violations. However, what she got was a call from the chief of the terrorist department Il’yas Mustafaev who confirmed that he had received the request of Ms. Urlaeva. Mr. Mustafaev asked to stop calling the NSS as the grief following the death of the “father of the nation” was still holding on. He added that doctors and teachers were receiving payments for harvesting cotton and that “there is not any problem with this”.

The Uzbek Human Rights Alliance has presented evidence proving that officials of the Uzbek Federation of Trade Unions are involved in hiding the of use of forced labor. Moreover, they put pressure on those who inform human rights activists about such violations.


Press Release of Human Rights Alliance of Uzbekistan

September 13, 2016