06:08 GMT +323 October 2016
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    DUSHANBE, January 13 (RIA Novosti) - The Supreme Court of Tajikistan sentenced the deputy chairman of the Islamic Revival Party, Shamsuddin Shamsuddinov, to 16 years in prison Monday evening.

    "The court has found the accused guilty of creating a criminal organization, polygamy, and border violation," explained the press secretary of the court, Mashkura Sodirova.

    Three other members of the criminal organization (not affiliated with the IRP) on trial in the same case were sentenced to terms varying from 16 to 25 years.

    Mr. Shamsuddinov was arrested in May 2003. After the arrest, the IRP issued a statement declaring his innocence. The leadership of the party alleged that in the years of the Tadjikistani civil war (1992-1997) Mr. Shamsuddinov held the post of IRP deputy chairman and had not taken part in the fighting, therefore, he could not have committed the crimes of which he is accused. The IRP was the principle political force behind the United Tajikistani Opposition during the civil war.

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