More documentation from the Fall 2008 harvest continues to emerge, this time in a remarkable report issued by the International Labor Rights Forum, compiled by Uzbek human rights activists. Based on 72 original interviews with parents, schoolchildren, teachers and farmers taken just after the harvest was completed, the report lays bare just how vicious state pressure really is.
Cut off families' electricity, gas or water? Deprive them of welfare support payments? Beat the children? Lock up the parents for a couple of days? Shut down their businesses, or fine them? Fire the teachers or principals for not bringing all the kids to the fields? Nothing is too drastic for the Uzbek government, it seems. The next time someone claims that this is all a problem of "local mentality," send them this document.
Link to the report below: