Tajik Journalists Told To Use President's Full Title In Reports

DUSHANBE -- Journalists with state-run media outlets in Tajikistan say they have been instructed to use President Emomali Rahmon's full, lengthy title in reports about him.

Journalists working for state media told RFE/RL on April 23 that they had been instructed to present Rahmon as "the founder of peace and national unity of Tajikistan, the leader of the nation, President Emomali Rahmon."

The director of Tajik State Radio, Farruh Ziyoev, told RFE/RL that the mandatory use of the president's full title was required by law, without elaborating.

Rahmon 64, got the title and a lifelong immunity from prosecution in accordance with a law endorsed by himself in December 2015. The law also protects Rahmon's relatives from prosecution.

Rahmon, a former collective farm chief, has been in power in Tajikistan since 1992 -- a year after the 1991 collapse of the Soviet Union.

Independent lawyer Shokirjon Hakimov told RFE/RL that Tajik laws do not provide for any penalties for not mentioning the full title of the president in reports.