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Youth suicides increasing in northern Tajikistan: IWPR
Central Asia | analysis | 17:27, 13 October 2015 | 1491

AKIPRESS.COM - suicide Experts in northern Tajikistan are alarmed at the rising suicide rate among young people. In the most recent case, a second-year university student in the provincial centre Khujand hanged herself, said the Institute for War and Peace Reporting.

In the past six months, 11 minors committed suicide, out of a total of 136 deaths of this kind in the Sughd region.

“Suicides among 12- to 14-year-olds are a national catastrophe,” said Mahbuba Sultonova of Nasl, an NGO in northern Tajikistan.

The motives vary, but family problems, poverty, and lack of employment opportunities have been cited as possible causes.

Officials in Sughd are concerned, and are retraining 340 psychologists for deployment in schools across the region.

Psychologists themselves say families are crucial to preventing the adolescent sense of alienation that can lead to suicidal tendencies.

School psychologist Muharrama Rahimova recalls one case where a schoolgirl tried to drown herself after family members accused her of behaving badly and compared her unfavourably with her older siblings. Psychologists invited her parents into the school, and they modified their behavior so that the child was able to reconnect with her family.

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