An Islamic organization called "Eryk," including its treatment of Christians (January 1998 - present) [KGT31277.E]

Page 519 of the 1998 Political Handbook of the World states:

Democratic Party of Free Kyrgyzstan (Demokraticheskaya Partiya Erkin Kyrgzstan(ErK). The ErK (an acronym meaning "will") was founded in 1991 as a splinter group of the DDK [Democratic Movement of Kyrgyzstan] on a platform of moderate nationalism and support for a liberal market economy. It was weakened in 1992 by secession of the more nationalist Fatherland (below), its subsequent attempts to build a prodemocracy bloc making little progress. ErK Chairman Topchubek Turganaliyev was campaign manger for Medetkan Sherimkulov in the December 1995 presidential election but was arrested shortly before the polling (in which Sherimkulov placed last of three candidates).

A 7 December 1998 Kyrgyz Rukhu article states:

The former head of the Erkin Kyrgyzstan Democratic Party, Topchubek Turgunaliyev, has appealed for support in his fight against "authoritarian dictatorship and the corrupted and criminal elite in power" in Kyrgyzstan following his release from prison on parole on 24th November.

The appeal, published in the Kyrgyz newspaper "Kyrgyz Rukhu" on 7th December, was addressed to human rights groups, the media and Kyrgyz politicians.

As well as thanking people for the support he and his family have received so far, Turgunaliyev vowed to continue the fight for a democratic Kyrgyzstan....

Turgunaliyev, who was adopted by Amnesty International as a prisoner of conscience, was charged with defaming the president in 1996. In January 1997 he was convicted of misusing funds when he was rector of the Humanities University in the Kyrgyz capital, Bishkek, in 1993. A 10-year sentence was later reduced to four years on appeal.

In August 1998, during an earlier period of parole, he was sent back to a penal colony, after attending a rally and allegedly accusing state officials of violating the law.

No additional information on an organization called Eryk in Kyrgyzstan, nor information on its treatment of Christians, could be found among the sources consulted by the Research Directorate.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


Kyrgyz Rukhu [Bishkek, in Kyrgyz]. 7 December 1998. "Opposition Figure to Fight 'Dictatorship' on Release From Jail." (BBC Summary 12 Dec. 1998/NEXIS)

Political Handbook of the World: 1998. 1998. Edited by Arthur S. Banks. Binghamton, NY: CSA Publications.

Additional Sources Consulted

Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 1998. 1999.

Electronic sources: IRB databases, Internet, NEXIS/LEXIS, REFWORLD, WNC.

Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs [Abingdon, Oxfordshire, UK.]. April 1998, October 1998.

KI Frontier [Oxford]. Ns. 1, 2, 4, 5, 6. 1998.

Nationalities Papers [Abingdon, Oxfordshire, UK.]. March 1998 - December 1998.

Transitions [Prague]. January 1998 - February 1999.

Three oral sources contacted did not provide information on the requested topic.

Unsuccessful attempts to contact other oral sources.