Thursday, July 26, 2012 -
A Swedish court acquitted on Thursday an Uzbek couple who were on trial for the attempted murder of a respected Uzbek imam and opposition figure to authoritarian President Islam Karimov.
The defendants, a husband and wife, had been on trial for the attempted murder of Nazarov since earlier this month.
The northern Swedish court of Ostersund announced the verdict on Thursday. Prosecutors have until August 16 to appeal the verdict, but it is unclear whether they will do so.
Imam Obidkhon Qori Nazarov, 50, was shot three times in the head by a gun with a silencer in the stairwell of a building in the northwestern Swedish town of Stromsund in February.
He remains in a coma but stable.
Nazarov’s son, Dovudkhon, told Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) that his family will continue to push for justice.
“We are planning to complain against this court decision,” he said. “There is no doubt that we are not fully satisfied with the decision. And we plan to push the case to higher courts.”
The Swedish court found no satisfactory evidence that the Uzbek couple on trial was planning to execute the imam.
Last week, Swedish prosecutor Krister Petersson accused Uzbek secret services of orchestrating the attack on the dissident imam.