Three brothers from Qubodiyon district went to Syria, taking their families with them

28/09/2015 15:16
RFE/RL
Views: 7200

DUSHANBE, September 28, 2015, Asia-Plus – Radio Liberty’s Tajik Service reports that three brothers from Khatlon’s Qubodiyon district have gone to Syria together with their families.

Sharif Shirbekov, a 60-year-old resident of the Qubodiyon district, says all three young men had first gone to Russia as labor migrants.

None of the brothers have a higher education, and none of them served in the military, Shirbekov told RFE/RL.

In Russia, they worked on building sites or swept the streets. And they were also radicalized there.

Shirbekov complains that it was labor migrants from Uzbekistan who duped his sons into going to Syria.  He comes from an Uzbek-speaking family and says that maybe that's why his sons became involved with a group from the Uzbek cities of Namangan and Andijon.

The eldest of the three, 30-year-old Umar, was the first brother to go to Russia and then to Syria, Shirbekov says.  He first went to Moscow 15 years ago, and lived in a rental apartment with the Uzbek labor migrants.  It was there that Umar learned to pray, according to his father.  Then, at the start of 2014, Umar “did a foolish thing” and went to Syria.

Umar offered his own explanation for his actions. He telephoned his father and explained his assessment of the global situation: “The whole world is a fraud, we have to create a single Islamic state where all the world's Muslims can gather.”

Two months later, the middle brother, 25-year-old Abubakr, joined Umar in Syria.

And four months after that, the youngest brother, 20-year-old Rahmatullo, went to Syria too.

Over the past six months, eight members of Shirbekov's family -- three sons, four grandchildren, and a daughter-in-law -- have gone to the war-torn country.

Shirbekov has not heard from his sons lately.  With them gone, money is tight.  He works as a driver and says it's hard to make ends meet now.  And, as if things were not bad enough, his wife has fallen ill since her three boys went to Syria, and has had to see a doctor.

Shirbekov complains that it was labor migrants from Uzbekistan who duped his sons into going to Syria. He comes from an Uzbek-speaking family and says that maybe that's why his sons became involved with a group from the Uzbek cities of Namangan and Andijon.

The Shirbekovs say that, since then, they have had no news from their three sons or their other family members.

But they still hope that Umar, Abubakr, and Rahmatullo will come home.

 

 

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