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Analysis

Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan, Post-Election Challenges

Wednesday 13 May 2015
Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan, Post-Election Challenges

Alwaght- Islamic Renaissance Party of Tajikistan as the only political party with religious (Islamic) approaches in Tajikistan and other Central Asian countries has always played a positive role in maintaining cultural and political stability of the country. Announcement of the results of the first phase of recently held parliamentary election indicated that this party has not managed to enter the parliament. Hence, the party leaders paid special attention to change of management process of the party.

The charter of party based on Islam and religious beliefs states:"In the light of God, following the example of Prophet Muhammad and reliance on the wisdom of crowd, this party will try in line with achieving an advanced, free and stable society with the priority of law and social justice, democracy, meritocracy and human dignity and on the basis of national and religious values and human rights."

This party played an important role in establishing peace and stability and also in UN-supervised peace talks during the Tajik civil war between 1992 and 1997. During the years after the war, it has also made major contribution to maintaining stability and national values of the country. Some prominent members of this party, in accordance with the agreements after the civil war, were placed in important government positions and despite all the pressures were involved in running the country. Moreover, some members of this party have managed to enter the parliament in the previous parliamentary elections, so that Muhiddin Kabiri, Chairman of the Islamic Renaissance Party, and his deputy Seyyed Omar Husseini were elected as members of parliament. Failure of this party in the latest parliamentary election has placed it in a difficult situation. Hence, its high ranking officials are determined to reform the existing procedures.

It should be mentioned that after announcement of the results of recent parliamentary election, the party came under criticism. Subsequently, with regard to Husseini’s suggestion based on transfer of responsibility to the youth, Kabirir announced readiness to investigate the performance of current leadership of the party in the near future and make the required changes.

Muhiddin Kabiri who became the leader of Islamic Renaissance Party after the death of Abdullah Nuri in 2006, emphasizes on the Islamic ideology and believes that pleasing to God and serving the nation should be the main goal of the party. He attaches great importance to maintaining internal stability and believes that unrest in the region, economic and social crises, increase in the unemployment rate and devaluation of the national currency are the factors that can cause problems to the country in the future.

Regarding the political behaviors of the party in the recent years Islamic Renaissance Party's policy toward the government and society has been effective and constructive.

Criticizing the existing procedures, analysts believe that government’s approach toward the parties especially this party has always resulted in security challenges and domestic problems because the government institutions always try to prevent the experts and opposition parties from entering the parliament. Hence, Islamic Renaissance Party is under heavy political pressures. Nevertheless, the officials of this political group have considered the failure in election as a new opportunity for reviewing issues of the party and have called for closer cooperation between the members inside and outside the country.

It is noteworthy that Husseini in a letter to the interior minister of Tajikistan has expressed his complaint on police inappropriate behavior with the members and arbitrary arrests of members and supporters of the party in different cities as he called for the party officials’ meeting with the interior minister. Meanwhile, according to a member of the Islamic Renaissance Party, presence of a radical secular group in the government of this country has caused increasing pressure on the party. He believes that government’s violent encounter with the party after the parliamentary election indicates statesmen’s fear from the political Islam and independent clergymen.

Although the Tajik government denies violence and pressure against the Islamic group, the programs of public television networks indicate that the radical secular group not only attributes the cause of all the economic and social problems of the country to the inefficiency of government but also to the activity of Islamic Renaissance Party.

Husseini recommends that the statesmen should take action to improve the economic situation and people's livelihoods because continuation of this adverse situation will result in a complex social situation.

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