Religious Extremism in Ferghana Valley

Dr. Ramakant Dwivedi was Associate Fellow at the Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, New Delhi.
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  • April 2006

    A series of disturbing events— from the Tashkent bombing in February 1999 to the May 13, 2005 incidents in Andijon city in Ferghana Valley of Uzbekistan— have drawn attention to the growing role of the religious extremist forces in Central Asia. The Islamic Movement of Turkestan (IMT), also known as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) until the middle of 2003, and the Hizb-ut-Tahrir (HT) – the two leading extremist groups— have openly declared their objective of overthrowing the constitutional system and to create an Islamic state in Central Asia. While declining economic conditions, corruption, sense of injustice and non-accommodative polity have given more space to IMT and HT to operate, the ideological onslaught by often foreign backed religious forces, an unremitting flow of foreign funds and the unresolved conflict in Afghanistan are the principal factors for the growth of extremism in the Ferghana Valley.

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