Radio Free Europe

RFE/RL journalists report the news in 22 countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established, including Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Russia.

https://www.rferl.org/

Swiss To Return 'Illegal' Millions Of Late Uzbek Leader's Imprisoned Daughter.

Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of former Uzbek President Islam Karimov (file photo)

Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of former Uzbek President Islam Karimov (file photo)

TASHKENT -- Uzbekistan and Switzerland have agreed on the return by Swiss authorities of $131 million in assets seized during criminal proceedings against Gulnara Karimova, the daughter of longtime Uzbek President Islam Karimov.

The Uzbek Justice Ministry said on August 16 that Minister Ruslanbek Davletov and Swiss President Ignazio Cassis signed an agreement in Bern to place the confiscated assets for a UN fund for sustainable development in Central Asia's most populous nation of 35 million.

The breakthrough is one of a handful of efforts by Tashkent to agree on the return of some $1 billion in illicit funds, in some cases slowed by foreign authorities' desire to ensure transparency in the funds' return to public coffers.

"The fund will allow the returned assets to be used for the benefit of the population of Uzbekistan," Cassis said at the signing ceremony.

Switzerland froze around 800 million Swiss francs ($842 million) in 2012 in connection with criminal proceedings against Karimova, a pop diva and businesswoman who had a public falling-out with her late father and is currently in an Uzbek prison on embezzlement and criminal conspiracy charges.

The Uzbek Justice Ministry said in February that it was working with authorities in Switzerland, the United States, France, Russia, and several other nations on the return of Karimova's assets that it said were "earned through criminal activities."

The ministry said at the time that Uzbek and Swiss authorities had agreed to create a multiparty trust fund with the United Nations to work on the return of assets that were confiscated under a court decision as part of the probe against Karimova.

It said that assets worth about $131 million and confiscated in 2019 were ready to be transferred to Uzbekistan.

In 2020, the Swiss government said a nonbinding framework agreement signed between Switzerland and Uzbekistan meant any returned assets "shall be used for the benefit of the people of Uzbekistan."

Tashkent has sought over $1 billion from foreign jurisdictions since announcing Karimova's imprisonment in 2017.

Once seen as a possible successor to her father, Karimova was placed under house arrest in Tashkent in 2014 while he was still alive and running the country. Karimov died in 2016 and Shavkat Mirziyoev succeeded him soon afterward.

Criminal investigators in Switzerland, the United States, Sweden, and the Netherlands have linked Karimova to a massive, years-long bribery scheme that revolved mainly around foreign telecommunications companies gaining access to the Uzbek market.

In December 2017, Karimova was sentenced to a 10-year prison term but the sentence was later commuted to house arrest for five years. She was detained in March 2019 for allegedly violating the terms of her house arrest.

In February 2020, Karimova sent a letter to Mirziyoev offering to return $686 million to the country's treasury in exchange for the dismissal of the court case against her at home.

But a month later she received an additional 13-year sentence after being found guilty of extortion, money laundering, and other crimes.

Here are 10 practical recommendations and tips from Goldweb Solutions that we use in our practice.
Останні новини
Ukrainian Mural Artist Leaves US, Returns to Irpin Despite War.

Ukrainian Mural Artist Leaves US, Returns to Irpin Despite War.

Irpin, a city in the Kyiv region, was under Russian occupation in March. Officials say over 70% of its infrastructure was damaged. When the Russians retreated, several residents started returning from abroad to help rebuild their city. Anna Kosstu...

Biden Administration Vows To Fund Florida’s Cleanup Cost.

Biden Administration Vows To Fund Florida’s Cleanup Cost.

The White House is monitoring Hurricane Ian’s path after President Biden’s visit to FEMA headquarters on Thursday, where he vowed to pay for 100 percent of the cost of clearing debris in Florida. NBC News’ Josh Lederman breaks down what message Pr...

Hear what CNN reporter noticed about crowd watching Putin's speech.

Hear what CNN reporter noticed about crowd watching Putin's speech.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said four occupied Ukrainian regions will become part of Russia “forever,” during his Kremlin speech that announced the illegal annexations. CNN’s Matthew Chance and Nick Paton Walsh react to Putin’s speech. #CNN #...

What Ted Cruz gets right about Donald Trump

What Ted Cruz gets right about Donald Trump

Sen. Ted Cruz said it is “utter garbage” when potential Republican candidates pronounce that they would run in 2024 whether or not former President Donald Trump does. In today’s episode of The Point, CNN’s Chris Cillizza discusses how the Texas se...

Man in Florida rescues cat from flood during Hurricane Ian.

Man in Florida rescues cat from flood during Hurricane Ian.

A man waded in surging waters to rescue a cat trapped in the flood in Bonita Springs, Florida, as Hurricane Ian made landfall Wednesday. The cat had found shelter on top of an air conditioning unit, but was surrounded by water. CBS News Streaming ...

Watch Live: Biden discusses federal response to Hurricane Ian as it nears South Carolina - CBS News.

Watch Live: Biden discusses federal response to Hurricane Ian as it nears South Carolina - CBS News.

President Biden is providing an update on the federal response to Hurricane Ian as the storm approaches South Carolina on Friday. Biden issued an emergency declaration for South Carolina Thursday night after Ian strengthened back to a Category 1 s...