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АКИpress CA-News Tazabek Turmush
Germany willing to grant asylum to persecuted Uzbek journalist
Central Asia | society | 14:18, 09 August 2017 | 1305
Photo: twitter.com/amnestypress

AKIPRESS.COM - Ali Feruz can count on a paid job and a residency permit if he is allowed to come to Germany and not the persecution, imprisonment and torture that his colleagues say would await him should he be sent back to Uzbekistan, Deutsche Welle reported.

Last Wednesday, a Russian court determined that the Russian-born journalist be deported to Uzbekistan. Since then, Feruz (his pseudonym) has been detained in a deportation center outside Moscow. On Tuesday, the Moscow City Court postponed the deportation but ruled that Feruz be confined in a special detention center for foreigners until the ECHR issues its ruling.

According to information provided to DW, Germany is prepared to take in the journalist. That information states that he would be granted a residency permit on "humanitarian grounds.

However, things are not that simple: Feruz, who is legally a citizen of both Russia and Uzbekistan, cannot leave Russia. Another point that has complicated the issue is the fact that Feruz does not have a passport. He says it was stolen years ago and he did not want to apply for a new one for fear that he would be arrested by Uzbek authorities.

According to Dmitry Muratov, editor-in-chief at Novaya Gazeta, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is prepared to provide Feruz with travel documents and assist him in leaving Russia.

If everything goes well, Feruz will have a clear path to Germany: He has been given a position in a project for Syrian refugees at the University of Göttingen. Feruz speaks Arabic among other languages, and Olga Reznikova from the University of Göttingen told DW that the position would be financed through a stipend from the Boris Nemtsov Foundation.

Moreover, the organization Reporters Without Borders is interested in working with him. German friends of the journalist have been actively working toward getting him to Germany since he was first arrested by Russian authorities in March 2017.

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