Our organization has always defended non-violent methods, we fight against the regime’s tyranny and the lack of rights. We have nothing against the state and there is no radicalism at all in the book written by our leader Akram Yuldashev. The authorities try to scare the whole world with that book, which is only a philosophical treatise. Our organization includes several hundred persons united in full mutual confidence. Our activists are straightforward persons who have earned the assurance of our people.
We managed to get along in every enterprise we set to with a will, and there was even a time where our activists would appear on TV as successful businessmen. That could not last because our ideas don’t fit the state ideology. We have been subjected to a surveillance regime and the authorities have begun to close our workshops under various pretexts. We don’t want caliphate, we only want justice and trade freedom. Allah is my witness, we don’t support what happened in Andizhan but our passive resistance has been of no use at all. We lost our patience when a group of innocents was put in jail. Their case was heard in camera. Then they killed our women, our mothers, our children, and that was what led us to take arms. I can’t still see clearly what happened, I was not involved in the attack. The authorities themselves set several buildings on fire to accuse us and justify their intervention. They said it was our men who opened fire but, who would shoot at his own family who has just come to support him? When our men came out with the hostages, they were all killed. We thought they would use water cannons or plastic bullets. When the vehicles arrived in the place, people started to throw everything they had at them, and it was then when they started to shoot. I think that at least 1000 people were killed.
I set out to gather our men, who are by the Kirghizstan border, in order to prepare a plan. I still don’t know what plan it could be, I have lost touch with my organization. I don’t know what’s going on in the country because it’s karimov’s press releases all that are broadcast all the time. Our ideas haven’t been defeated, they will survive beyond anything else. We have men all throughout Uzbekistan and abroad.

Turkish Weekly (Turkey)
The Turkish Weekly is the daily published by the International Strategic Research Organization based in Ankara.

Interview with a Surviving Uzbek Rebel of Akramiya”, by Rustam, Turkish Weekly, May 26, 2005. Text adapted from an interview. His author has used a pen name as a security measure.