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You're reading: Rights watchdog raps Uzbekistan, chides ‘mute’ West
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New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) said Uzbekistan, a former Soviet republic of 28 million people, had failed to keep promises to stop the use of torture, including electric shocks and simulated asphyxiation, in its criminal justice system.

"The West has to wake up to the fact that Uzbekistan is a pariah state with one of the worst human rights records," Steve Swerdlow, Uzbekistan researcher at HRW, said in a statement accompanying a 107-page report citing numerous cases of torture.

"Being located next to Afghanistan should not give Uzbekistan a pass on its horrendous record of torture and repression."

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