Tuesday

18th Dec 2018

EU slaps arms embargo on Uzbekistan

Member states on Monday (14 November) launched an embargo on arms sales to Uzbekistan and imposed a one-year visa ban on 12 top Uzbek officials.

The EU adopted the measures in "light of the excessive, disproportionate and discriminate use of force by the Uzbek security forces during the Andijan events in May and following the refusal of Uzbek authorities to allow an independent international inquiry into these events," EU diplomats said in a statement.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

The embargo will apply to exports of arms, military equipment and other equipment that might be used for "internal repression."

In the list of persons banned from entering the EU are interior minister Zakirjan Almatov and defence minister Kadir Gulamov, together with high ranking military officials and the governor of the city of Andijan.

The decision came shortly after the Uzbek supreme court sentenced 15 men for up to 20 years in prison for organising riots in the eastern town of Andijan, where 500 to 700 people were killed by government security forces this Spring according to media reports.

In what has been described by human rights organisations as a "show trial" and a "parody of justice", all 15 men were found guilty of murder, rioting, hostage-taking, membership of banned Islamist groups and attempting to establish an Islamist caliphate in Andijan.

Uzbekistan turns to Russia

Meanwhile, Uzbek president Islam Karimov got the red-carpet treatment in Moscow from Russian leader Vladimir Putin yesterday, after coming to town to sign a new military pact between the two countries.

Russia supports the official Uzbek version of events on, claiming the victims were terrorists trying to overthrow the government.

Mr Karimov said Russia was and remains Uzbekistan's reliable ally, pointing out that the strategic military alliance signed in the Kremlin on Monday "defends the strategic interests of our states in all spheres."

"The strengthening of Russia's position in central Asia will guarantee peace and stability and meet the fundamental interests of our peoples," he remarked.

EU aviation agreement with Morocco in legal hot water

The European Commission is struggling to respond to questions on how it can include the disputed territory of the Western Sahara into its aviation agreement with Morocco - following a recent order from the General Court of the European Union.

News in Brief

  1. 3,500 UK troops on standby for no-deal Brexit
  2. Brexit: Opposition disagrees over no confidence vote
  3. EU court confirms suspension of Polish judges law
  4. France to tax Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon
  5. EU negotiators agree CO2 targets for cars
  6. May: Brexit vote will be week of 14 January
  7. Rome finds extra budget funds to fit EU demands
  8. Polish climate talks end in agreement on rulebook

Opinion

The Azov crisis will backfire

Vladimir Putin's nightmare of Petro Poroshenko's re-election will be even certain as Ukrainians rally around the flag. Next March's election is not just to elect a new president but also a commander-in-chief to deal with five more years of Putin.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. International Partnership For Human RightsKyrgyz authorities have to immediately release human rights defender Azimjon Askarov
  2. Nordic Council of MinistersSeminar on disability and user involvement
  3. Nordic Council of MinistersInternational appetite for Nordic food policies
  4. Nordic Council of MinistersNew Nordic Innovation House in Hong Kong
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNordic Region has chance to become world leader when it comes to start-ups
  6. Nordic Council of MinistersTheresa May: “We will not be turning our backs on the Nordic region”
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsOpen letter to Emmanuel Macron ahead of Uzbek president's visit
  8. International Partnership for Human RightsRaising key human rights concerns during visit of Turkmenistan's foreign minister
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersState of the Nordic Region presented in Brussels
  10. Nordic Council of MinistersThe vital bioeconomy. New issue of “Sustainable Growth the Nordic Way” out now
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersThe Nordic gender effect goes international
  12. Nordic Council of MinistersPaula Lehtomaki from Finland elected as the Council's first female Secretary General

Latest News

  1. Muscat's one-man rule poses challenge for EU
  2. Orban protests target state media in new front
  3. Brexit and the Queen Sacrifice
  4. EU gives Switzerland another six months for a deal
  5. Fiscal discipline rules in eurozone are devastating
  6. EU capitals see weekend of tear gas and water cannon
  7. Bulgarian 'EU passports' whistleblower wants justice
  8. No more Brexit talks, despite May's pleas

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us