Human Rights

kickboxing

Mukhamadjon and his student prepare for a fight at Uzbekistan’s Taekwondo Federation. Mukhamadjon was born to ethnic Uzbek parents in the Kyrgyz Republic in August 1991, just four months before the Soviet Union collapsed. Towards the end of 1992, the family moved to Namangan, but they were too late to claim citizenship and their son became stateless. “I was the Uzbek champion in kickboxing and there were moments when my coach wanted to send me for international championships abroad, but … there would always be problems with the visa,” he says. “When it came to my sporting career, it was an obstacle.” Mukhamadjon Turgunov became an Uzbek citizen this year after being stateless for 28 of his 29 years.

A boy wearing a facemask uses his phone as a camera in a crowd.

UNESCO has condemned the killing of 59 media workers in 2020, among them four women. With 22 killings each, the Latin America and the Caribbean Region and the Asia and the Pacific Region registered the highest number of fatalities in the profession, followed by the Arab States Region with nine, and Africa with six. Overall, 2020 saw one of the lowest yearly tolls recorded by UNESCO over the past decade, during which 888 journalists and media workers paid the ultimate price for informing the public. In 2019, UNESCO condemned the killing of 57 journalists, 99 in 2018.