Chikunova, Tamara

Gender: .
State of concern: .

Who, Why and How exiled:

Chikunova is the founder and director of the NGO “Mothers against the Death Penalty and Torture”, which campaigned for the abolition of the death penalty in Uzbekistan and continues to campaign for its abolition around the world (Human Rights Watch, 2007). She founded the organisation in Autumn 2000 after her own son was executed by the authorities in Uzbekistan in July that year. The NGO was repeatedly told by officers of Uzbekistan’s secret service that the organisation was “black-listed” and that “the secret service was awaiting orders to dissolve their organisation” (Human Rights Office City of Nuremberg, 2004).


Category of exile: . (Definitions here.)
Alleged affiliation: Civil society.

Which stages experienced: Stage 1   not Stage 2   not Stage 3. (Definitions here.)
Date of most serious incident: 2004.
Violence experienced: .

Stage 1 details (accusations/ charges/ Interpol notice/ extradition requests):

According to Amnesty International (2005), the Uzbek authorities made it "impossible" for the Mothers against the Death Penalty and Torture organisation to carry out their human rights work on several occasions. In Uzbekistan, Chikunova was subject to threats and intimidation (Amnesty International, 2005). In 2003 armed police visited Chikunova's flat up to three times a week to "check her documents" (Amnesty International, 2005). In 2009, Chikunova left Tashkent, first moving to Germany and then Italy (Estense, 2015).

The intimidation also affected family members of Chikunova (Amnesty International, 2005). On the 29th September 2004 an investigator visited Chikunova's 78 year old Mother, who was confined to her bed, informing her that he had an arrest warrant for her daughter (Amnesty International, 2005). According to Amnesty International (2005), there were "strong indications" that the authorities targeted her Mother to put pressure on Chikunova, who was in the Netherlands at the time.

International arrest warrant: .

Countries of transit, asylum and/or residence: , , .

Current status:

Chikunova continues to campaign for the abolition of the death penalty worldwide as head of the NGO Mothers Against the Death Penalty and Torture, which is also a member of the World Coalition Against the Death Penalty, consisting of 146 member NGOs (World Coalition, 2018).

Press sources:

Amnesty International. (2005). Women Human Rights Defenders at Risk.

Estense. (2015). A recognition for those who fight against the death penalty. Available: Last accessed 15th Feb 2018

Human Rights Office City of Nuremberg. (2004). Tamara Chikunova.Available: Last accessed 15th Feb 2018.

Human Rights Watch. (2007). Under Siege and Working for Justice: Human Rights Defenders in Uzbekistan. Available: Last accessed 15th Feb 2018.

World Coalition. (2018). Mothers Against Death Penalty . Available: Last accessed 15th Feb 2018.