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How Uzbeks turned a hashtag against a dictatorship.

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There's sort of an anti-justice system, where a lot of punishment and interrogation tactics are arbitrary. You never know if you're going to become the unfortunate victim of some kind of persecution by the state, and that keeps people on edge. Which is one of the reasons why people are so afraid to speak out. The fact that some are doing so now is really remarkable.

Journalist Sarah Kendzior profiles the rise of the Uzbek social media movement Qorqmaymiz (We are not afraid) and explains the danger the group faces from a repressive state with an arbitrary justice system and roots in Soviet-era surveillance tactics.

Sarah is author of the Foreign Policy article ‘We Are Not Afraid’ Inside an Uzbek Internet rebellion.

Interview transcript via Antidote Zine

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Sarah Kendzior

Sarah Kendzior is a St. Louis-based writer, anthropologist and researcher.

sarahkendzior.com

 

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