Biography

jahangir_mamatov.jpgJahangir Mamatov

‘Jahangir Mamatov is a senior linguist, author, journalist and a former politician from Uzbekistan. He currently resides in the United States.

==During the Soviet era==
Mamatov was born on September 1, 1955, in [[Samarkand Province]]<ref>1</ref>, married in 1980, and has four children. He was educated in Samarkand, and at the Department of Journalism of [[Tashkent State University]] <ref>2</ref>from 1973–1979, pursuing research on ethics in journalism and linguistics until 1981.  He started his journalistic career with the ”Toshkent Haqiqati” newspaper in 1973, and from 1974–1979 with the ”Qishloq haqiqati” newspaper.

He worked as an editor at the State TV-Radio Company from 1980-1981. Then he worked for the ”Lenin Yoli” newspaper in Samarkand province from 1982-1985.

From 1985–1990 he worked as a correspondent of ”O’zbekiston Ovozi” in Samarkand province, and for ”Mushtum” satirical magazine and the ”Qishloq Haqiqati” newspaper. During these years more than a thousand of his satirical, critical, and analytical articles were published. Some of his articles were published in the ”Youth” reference book, ”Pure Dawn”, and ”525 days that Shook Samarkand” books.

In 1990, at the age of 35, Mamatov received the title of “Honored Journalist of Uzbekistan”. In the same year he was elected from the Jomboy electoral district to the Uzbek Supreme Soviet (parliament), serving as a high rank official on its Glasnost Committee until 1993. He wrote ”Press Law” and founded the newspaper ”Xalq So’zi”, the main publication of the Uzbek Parliament.

==Uzbek independence==
On June 20, 1990, the Supreme Soviet issued Uzbekistan’s Declaration of Independence. Mamatov was one of the authors of this historic document.

Mamatov organized an investigative group in the parliament regarding violence in Bekobod, Boka, Parkent and concluded that those incidents were masterminded by the Uzbek government. He reported evidence that the KGB stood behind the terror acts among the ethnic Uzbeks and Meskhet Turks in the Parkent district of Tashkent province. After those events Mamatov was pursued by the Uzbek government. The central Committee of the Communist Party of Uzbekistan accused Mamatov of criticizing the Chairman of the Party, Islam Karimov, and the chief justice of the Supreme Court on his TV program asked the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet for permission to arrest him, but the attempt was rejected for lack of parliamentary support.

On August 17, 1991, as his protest against the 1991 Soviet coup d’état attempt|attempted coup in Moscow aimed at opposing Mikhail; Gorbachev|Gorbachev’s reform program and the Union of Sovereign States|new union treaty that he decentralised power to the republics, Mamatov went to demonstrate with some of his colleagues in front of the Parliament building and publicly burned his Party member certificate. He later stood for election as chairman of the Uzbek Journalists Association, and claimed that the government falsified the election results.

The Glasnost Committee in the Uzbek Parliament was eventually shut down by President Islam Karimov and his suuporters; once Mamatov resigned, the committee was re-instated.

In 1991 in the 7th session of the Uzbek Parliament, Mamatov along with his fellow-deputies, put forward measures before the Parliament to limit Karimov’s attempts to absolute dictatorship. Under pressure from democratic deputies, the Uzbek government had to permit the organization of a committee, regulating the relations between the President of Uzbekistan and the Parliament. Mamatov became the Presidential Advisor for Parliamentary Relations in that committee, and subsequently was appointed as a Chief of Uzbek State Television-Deputy of the State Radio and Television Committee.

==In opposition==
However, as a result of the Karimov administration’s attacks on human rights and on democracy in the country, in 1992 after the bloody events in Tashkent city’s Student Town, Mamatov felt compelled to resign his position in protest. Before his resignation from his position Mamatov declared that dictatorship was reigning in Uzbekistan. It was the first historical event in which a high government official declared his resignation as a sign of protest to Karimov.

Mamatov continued to lead a group of opposition representatives in the Uzbek parliament, who strongly and openly criticized the emerging dictatorship under Karimov’s rule, and who persisted in fighting for democracy. Mamatov quickly emerged among the most prominent critics of Karimov regime’s state policy. Mamatov was one of the organizer’s of the March 28, 1992, Uzbek Democratic Coalition Forum that took place in the building of the Erk/Freedom Democratic Party.

After that, Mamatov led the non-government Turon a language research organization. Even though, this organization could be shut down only by a decision of the Supreme Court, the Ministry of Justice, violating the law, stopped the function of the Turon organization. The belongings of the organization were confiscated.

Jahangir Mamatov wrote the book ”Games of Palace” about Karimov’s actions. Even though the government confiscated the manuscript of the book, the copies became very popular and it was published in the newspaper of ERK Democratic Party in 1994.

On February 7, 1993 the Uzbek government banned the newspaper ”Erk” (Freedom), which was affiliated with the ERK Democratic party, the main party of the democratic political opposition in the country.  At that time, Mamatov was a chief editor of the paper, and also deputy chairman of the ERK Democratic Party itself.

On February 13, 1993, the Uzbek government, using the police, forcibly evicted Mamatov and his family from their house in Tashkent, and the house was seized by the government and he was forced to move to his hometown Samarkand. He was charged with criticizing President Karimov in the parliament for his dictatorial behavior.

On April 17, 1993 Mamatov was arrested in Samarkand by Uzbek authorities.

==In exile==
With the help of supporters Mamatov was able to escape Uzbekistan. His wife, the mother of four children, was put under pressure to divorce him but refused to do so, and was convicted and sentenced for two years.

After securing his family’s exit from Uzbekistan, Mamatov moved to Turkey. From 1994–1998 he worked in [[Koch University]] in Istanbul, as a correspondent of the BBC Uzbek Service, and as a columnist for the newspaper ”Turkiye”. While living abroad he wrote his book ”Quvg’in” (“Exile”, trilogy), which was critical of the tyrant regime in Uzbekistan.

The Uzbek government sent secret agents three times to eliminate Mamatov, this led to Mamatov being granted political asylum from the United States through the UN in February 1998.

Mamatov resumed his career as a journalist in the Voice of America|VOA Uzbek Service, USA from 1999-2004. Due to his critical reports the Uzbek government ordered the arrest of Mamatov’s relatives and his sisters. With pressure by US Congress, US Government, and International Human Rights Organizations, Mamatov’s relatives were released.

In 2005 Mamatov brought together leaders of the Uzbek democratic opposition who had been unable to effectively coordinate their activities over the past 15 years. A Congress of Democratic Uzbekistan (CDU), open to all opposition groups and individuals, convened on September 25, 2005, of which Mamatov was the Chairman until 2011.

Mamatov also taught Uzbek in language schools and since 2001 has been working as a senior linguist at the Language Research Center (LRC). At the LRC, Mamatov published Comprehensive Uzbek-English Dictionary and many others.

==Books==
Jahangir Mamatov is the author of nearly 40 books. Many of his books were published in the United States, Turkey and Azerbaijan, yet his books are strictly forbidden in his homeland Uzbekistan. He is the author of six linguistic books which were all published in the United States.

He has been publishing his personal website, [[[http://www.jahonnoma.com http://www.jahonnoma.com]]] and the CDU website [http://wwww.turonzamin.org wwww.turonzamin.org] since 2001.

Books:

Comprehensive Uzbek-English Dictionary
Tajik-English Dictionary
Dictionary of Central Asian Islamic Terms
Uzbek Islamic Debates
The Dark Days

Uzbek books by Jahangir Mamatov:

1.IAK
2.Karimovning kashfiyotlari
3.O’zbeklar va o’zbeklar
4.Oqsaroy sirlari
5.Zehniyat jumbog’i
6.Qatag’on (2005. Savol-Javob)
7.2006 yil (Savol-Javoblar)
8.Hayqiriq (2007. Savol-Javob)
9.Tarixni titratgan kunlar
10.QUVG’IN-1 kitob
11.QUVG’IN-2-kitob
12.QUVG”IN-3-kitob
13.ASSASSIN
14.220 latifa
15.Ankabut (Siyosiy latifalar)
16.Kulmagan elning baxti kulmaydi
17.Aldarko’sa taxtga minganda
18.Karimovning 100 kuni
19.Ozodlikning olovli yo’li
20.Nurnoma
21.Shehidlar Hiyabani
22.Islom lashkarlari
23.Ishoratlar
24.Turonzamin faryodlari
25.Yaqin moziy
26.Siam egizaklari
27.Panjaralar
28.Ikkinchi front
29.Samarqandni sog’inib
30.Vatan mansiz…
31.O’zligim
32.Havzi qulqulum

See [http://www.jahonnoma.com http://www.jahonnoma.com] for further publications.

==Bibliography==
* [http://www.jahonnoma.com jahonnoma.com]
* Jahongir Muhammad: ”IAK” (memoir)
* Ahmadjon Muxtorov: “So’z mulki Jahongirligiga da’vogar”,(Ahmadjon Muktorov, chairman of Uzbek Journalist Association, published “Nominee for Conqueror of Words” article in 1991)
* Yodgor Obid: “Otash qalb uchqunlari”( Yodgor Obid wrote introduction to Mamatov’s book)
* Gulchehra Nurullayeva: Munosabat, June 11, 2004 (the article of famous Uzbek poetesses “Reactions”)
* Abdurahim Polatov, the leader of “Birlik” popular movement, preface for Jahangir Mamatov’s book, ”Nur yo’li”
* “Birlik”: “Ozodlikning olovli yo’llari”( An article from the “Birlik” website)
* Certificate of peoples’ deputy
* Certificate of “ERK” democratic party
* Certificate of President Office
* Best journalist of the year. Award. VOA-“Tun in”, December 2000, vol.4 No.6 page 6
* Article about the political course of an American government-May 30, 2001 (“Repression in Uzbekistan”, BBG-IBB-VOA-editorial=0-09287 5/30/2001)
* Article about the political course of an American government-May 30, 2001 (“Repression in Uzbekistan continues”, BBG-IBB-VOA-editorial=0-09394 8/21/2001)
* Awards for articles about human rights: 2001; 2002; 2003; 2004
* Nasratulla Laheb, “Interviews by Jahangir Muhammad” 2001
* BBC: “Exiled writers”, BBC, 2003
* “Confessions of General”, BBC, May 18, 2001.
* Muhammad Solih, Leader of “ERK” party,  “Xalq Irodasi”, “O’zbekistan adabiyoti va san’ati”, June 29, 1990. (an article in “O’zbekistan adabiyoti va san’ati” newspaper.)
* Rasim Ekshi, Turkish author, “Dr. Boymirza hayit armug’oni”,(an article about Jahangir Mamatov in “Dr. Boymirza hayit armug’oni” book) Istanbul, 1999, ISBN 975-78-15-3
* Arslan Tekin, Turkish author, “Bir Turon Yo’lchisi”, Istanbul, 1996, ISBN 975-7893-11-0 (preface for Jahangir Mamatov’s book)
* Abduvali Vohidov, “Zagovorshiki”, Newspaper “Trud”, May 19, 1995. (An article from Russian newspaper “Trud”)
* Zaynutdinov, Kh. A. The chief of National Security Service investigative department, “Ayblov fikri”, September 12, 1994.
* The decision of Uzbek Supreme Court, 2000.
* [http://uzbekcongress.wordpress.com/2010/01/ turonzamin]

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