Fascist Switzerland Strikes back 176


Switzerland will still go to any lengths to protect the ultra-rich dictators and mafia who flock there. Mutabar Tadjibaeva – multiple rape victim, survivor of repeated torture and still dogged human rights activist, is wanted for questioning by Geneva Police for the crime of ringing the bell of Gulnata Karimova’s 25 million dollar house and asking to speak to her.

That is absolutely all she did. I know, as I was there and did it too. We both left our visiting cards, took some photos from the streets so the children of Uzbekistan could see where the profits from their slave labour in the cotton fields went, and then we left on the bus, as we came.

Uzbekistan is the World’s sixth most corrupt country according to Transparency International. I doubt one in ten of the houses in Cologny is bought with earned money. This is Gulnara’s 25 million dollar home, with the cranes then building a massive extension at the back.

I can understand that Gulnara does not want people to know she lives at 7 Rue Prevote (both e’s have acutes), Cologny, Geneva. A weird, weird village that also houses Gulanara’s sister Lola and the children of the Presidents of Kazakhstan and Armenia, among others. There are lterally thousands of CCTV cameras. At this time of year none of the homewoners are there, just security guards in Adidas wear. The only noise is the barking of guard dogs. The 4 wheel drive Porsches, Range Rovers and Mercedes G wagons are sat still and cold on the drives.

That a speaker at the FIDH human rights film festival is harassed in this way is bad enough. But Mutabar was also there to give formal depositions in human rights cases to the United Nations. That dictatorships can use the Geneva police to harass dissidents visitng the UN is scarcely healthy.

Switzerland attempted to clean up its image as the repository of illegal cash by adopting anti money-laundering legislation. But that legislation specifically exempts real estate – you can buy your Cologny mansion without having in any way to declare how you got all that cash. The ever corrupt Swiss exempted it because Switzerland makes money from it. Outbreaks of democracy on the streets of Cologny are liable to be bad for property values – hence the interest of the Geneva police, in the world’s best disguised fascist state.

I wonder in I can interest Occupy and the human rights groups in an annual summer camp for activists at Cologny? Let’s give the Geneva police some more difficult field of anti-democratic harassment than a small torture victim.


176 thoughts on “Fascist Switzerland Strikes back

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  • Clark

    The word “militant” appears in both the Le Monde article, and in the 20 Minutes Online article that Craig linked to in his original post.

    The accounts of the incident differ. In Craig and Mutabar Tadjibaeva’s account, they rang the door bell, asked to see Karimova but were refused, and so they posted their calling cards through the letter box. But the statement made by the Uzbek Mission states: “When a diplomat opened the door, these people [plural] tried to enter the property, filming with a camera” [my emphasis and edit].

    But the Uzbek complaint to the police was only about Mutabar Tadjibaeva. It is inconceivable that Uzbek security would have failed to identify Craig Murray, the former ambassador who had created so much trouble in 2003, and whose calling card was in their letter box. It thus seems that the Uzbek complaint to the Geneva police was dishonest, and deliberately phrased as “militants attempting to enter the house” in order to manipulate the police into taking action.

    I think that the Geneva police should demand the video camera record from the Uzbek Mission as evidence, and if the Uzbek Mission refuses, or their account proves to be fabricated, they should be charged with making a false statement and wasting police time, or the Swiss equivalent thereof. At the very least, the Uzbek Mission should be sent a hefty bill for the police resources they’ve needlessly wasted. If the Geneva police fail to do this then they have no credibility.

    It seems to have been a frightening experience for Mutabar Tadjibaeva, unable to understand French, and in fear that she could be deported to Uzbekistan.

  • karel

    Craig

    You probably do not know that Swiss and other residents of that lovely country are very fond of the police who are called at the slightest whim. In the eighties while staying with my wife in zurich, I was told by friends how the police arrived within minutes after they had finished hanging their washing in the garden ordering them to take the washing down immediately. It was my friends missfortune that that day was sunday when their sensitive neighbours felt presumably even more disturbed by the sight of underware fluttering in the wind. Arguing that they had a baby who shits a lot and they have to wash quite often made the policemen evem more agressive so they did what told to avoid arrest. I that light it seem to me that the lady who rang the bell could thank her good fortune that she was not shot on the spot.

    ,

  • Mary

    All you night owls are now sleeping the sleep of the just presumably.

    ‘David Olson requests information on the origin and earliest uses of “Sleep the sleep of the just.” Burton Stevenson’s Home Book of Quotations (sixth edition) offers “She slept the sleep of the just” (Elle s’endormit du sommeil des justes) from Racine’s Abrégé de l’his toire de Port Royal (vol. iv, l. 517); can readers supply other sources?’ Harvard Magazine.

    I looked at the Le Temps website the other day (the Geneva thread) but decided I did not want to give all that personal information on the registration to a bunch of unknowns.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_Temps

    ~~
    Sadly it is said that President Chavez is fading. He now has a respiratory infection.

  • Mary

    As our liberties and rights are being taken away by the pocket pols, thankfully we still have some independence in the judiciary such as Lord Neuberger below on the effect of cuts in legal aid.

    This is absolutely shocking. See the lobby fodder passed through. Beware the return of the Third Reich.

    Commons backs plans for secret courts
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-21653211

    BUT

    Ahead of Monday’s debate, Lord Woolf – a former Lord Chief Justice and crossbench peer – said the government’s amended plans would retain “the standards of general justice” while ensuring that all sides can put their case and judges are not “blindfolded” by not being able to test certain evidence.

    “They will ensure that both the government and the claimant are given the greatest opportunity to put their case and that concerned citizens will have the benefit of a final judgement on whether serious allegations have foundation,” he wrote in a letter to the Times.

    But Conservative MP Andrew Tyrie, who rebelled against the government, said he believed Lord Woolf was mistaken and too much power would lie in the hands of the government.

    “They (the amendments) are really about the kind of society we want to live in, about whether people can get to hear the case made against them, and whether we can keep legal safeguards we have had for generations,” he told MPs.

    Responding to Lord Woolf’s intervention, Reprieve – which campaigns to uphold the human rights of prisoners – said it was “hard to see how a case in which you cannot hear or challenge the evidence used against you can be described as meeting the standards of general justice”.’

    ~~~~

    Lord Neuberger, UK’s most senior judge, voices legal aid fears
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21665319

  • Mary

    Medialens on the same topic.

    Secret courts now a reality in the “U”K

    Posted by Hidari on March 5, 2013, 6:45 am

    “Great” Britain is not a democracy.

    “Clare Algar, executive director of Reprieve, said: “This has been a dark night for British justice.

    “These plans for secret courts were always dangerous and unnecessary, but the failure of even minor attempts to modify the bill means that it is even worse than when it first reached the House of Commons.

    “MPs must now vote against the bill altogether if they want to defend British justice.

    “Should that fail, the House of Lords will be the only thing standing in the way of plans which would mean the end of the right to a fair trial in a vast range of civil cases.””

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/law/2013/mar/04/secret-court-hearing-plans-government

    ~~
    If you have nothing to hide………………………

    Posted by Sherwoodian on March 5, 2013, 7:04 am, in reply to “Secret courts now a reality in the “U”K”

    Except if you are a banker or politician, in which case you have plenty to hide and nothing to fear.

  • craig Post author

    Clark

    I phoned the Swiss police today. I told them it is absolutely untrue there was any attempt to enter the premises. For Mutabar to have put herself on Uzbek legal jurisdiction would have been potentially disastrous.

    Interestingly the Geneva police told me there was no log of the complaint in the police computer. This looks to me like the police just indulging in a bit of off the record harassment at the request of someone rich from Cologny. Very Swiss.

  • craig Post author

    Villager

    Except they still want to question her about this non-incident.

    For you or me it would be a minor inconvenience, but for someone who has been tortured and raped by the police in their own country, it can be pretty traumatic.

  • Clark

    Craig, this is very serious, and you were absolutely right to refer to “fascist Switzerland” in your title. The matter seems to be simultaneously both off and on the record, so the police are acting outside the law. Higher Swiss authorities must correct that. If they don’t, then Switzerland is indeed permitting a police state, at least in Geneva.

  • KarimovaRevengeFantasist

    @All
    Sorry if the addresses did not work in Google Satellite (Yes, Mary, my error, not Street View). I erroneously put “No.” in front, and I think the Swiss in any case put the house number after the street. You can see Lola’s sun loungers etc (and the picture of Lola’s pad matches Mary’s link to the Daily Mail article about Andrew Rosenfeld.

    Craig will know all about this: I expect the involvement of the Swiss police is probably due to even Gulnara’s and Lola’s private residences having diplomatic status (like the Uzbek embassy?) – so of course no matter how criminal these two are, the police have to respond to any complaints (I expect the live-in servants, if they have any, are under order to complain about harassment if anyone unexpectedly rings the doorbell).

    Neither of these two have any business acumen at all, so it is no surprise Lola’s husband overpaid so spectacularly on 14 Chemin Vert, Vandoeuvres. In order to avoid having the source of their funds scrutinised by the DARES (the département des affaires régionales, de l’économie et de la santé), I wonder if they had to declare these homes as their main residences (the link I posted earlier talks about this, but my French is not good enough). Also there is a 3,000 sq metre limitation of something (the floor space? the size of the plot of land?) to avoid automatic referral for scrutiny of their finances.

    The Swiss embassy in Tashkent has already been the site of a Karimov rent-a-mob protest once before, so I don’t think it reasonable that Switzerland and Sweden without support from the EU and the USA should be expected to take on the Karimov regime and prosecute these people and their money laundering associates (Miss Avakyan, Bekhzod Akhmedov, etc. – if the latter doesn’t show up dead first for knowing too much).

    It is plain to me none of Gulnara’s businesses are money-spinners: they are just a smokescreen to cover the thefts. Guli perfume – forget it – the market is crowded with big brand names – it is just a vanity project. Googoosha singing – forget it – she even has to rip off the famous Iranian singer’s name, Googoosh – and sales outside Uzbekistan (the only sales that matter wouldn’t keep the lights on in just one of her properties). Gulnara is an extraordinary thief (she is hundreds of millions of times worse than Martha Stewart). The purchased celebrity endorsements (Monica Bellucci, Alain Delon, etc.) and the sexy (often tarted up) images Gulnara publishes of herself are just another way to distract from the thefts. The truth is if you are in the dictatorship business, and you live by stealing off everybody else you have to get the money out of the country (procure forex) otherwise there is a risk of others using the same methods on you (no good having the money in Uzbek soms?). That is where I think the national airline comes in useful. It is hard to believe any Uzbeks (except money launderers) would be allowed out of the country with forex, so there can’t be many passengers on the Uzbekistan Airways route to Geneva. I think it is a door to door smuggling operation under diplomatic cover. To avoid the Central Bank Governor knowing too much, you would have to get your loot out in gold bars or jewels (no coincidence Gulnara is in the jewellery business either). Using foreign airlines is a no-no: you would have to declare the contents of the cargo perhaps? The diplomatic cars can meet the Uzbekistan Airways plane in Geneva of course. With aircraft, to make a profit the break even passenger load factor is very sensitive to just one or two passengers making the difference between profit and loss. I am sure that Uzbekistan Airways route to Geneva is a mega loss maker, but it requires someone to observe the passenger numbers each day to be certain. The allegations of sex trafficking to the UAE would be a plausible way of earning hard currency and of helping the Tashkent Dubai route meet that all important break even passenger load factor too.

    There are probably ways to hit back spectacularly at these two (and to make a profit doing it). But it is maybe not a good idea just yet (next year after Iran and Afghanistan are sorted out would be better?). Of course I maybe a deluded moron, so maybe I don’t have a clue. We’ll see.

  • Clark

    This changing of police records is reminiscent of events in Sweden concerning the treatment of Julian Assange, when Irmeli Krans was instructed to alter records. And here in the UK, courts with secret evidence have just been voted for. Our world is descending into fascism.

  • craig Post author

    KRF

    You talk much sense.
    The only thing is, that the police are obliged to conduct a complaint from a diplomatic mission only on the same basis that they investigate a complaint by anybody else (which is what the policeman says in the Le Temps article).

    In London Embassies make these complaints against dissidents all the time, especially the Chinese Embassy, but the Met won’t call the dissidents in for questioning unless the Embassy rpovides some cradible evidence of a crime. The Geneva police are not acting normally here.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    @ Villager (22h20 yesterday) :

    I referred to Craig as @ Craig (Murray) because there had been another post from someone calling him/herself “Craig”. All clear now?

    And, by the way, I have not gone “quiet”. As I’ve said before, I do have other things to do with my time than to sit on this blog 24/7. Perhaps you don’t, in which case you should really try to get out more.

    @ Craig (Murray) :

    re. your invitation to me to contact the Geneva police. Well, this has been overtaken by several other posts, but still, could I suggest that it is for the person making the claim that someone has been called in for the “crime” of ringing a doorbell to justify his use of the word “crime”, and this would include investigating the matter more thoroughly yourself. After all, it’s your post and you were making the claim.

    Furthermore, why should one be so surprised that the Swiss police took an interest in this particular matter (especially if there had been a complaint from the Uzbeks)? Geneva is full of foreign missions, residences and diplomats and as you well know from the Vienna Convention and diplomatic practice there is an obligation on the host state to offer all due protection to such diplomats.

    Finally, I realise you have a particular and justifiable interest in Uzbekistan and this particular affair. But you are really going over the top when you call Switzerland the “world’s best disguised fascist state”, and I think you know it.
    Chucking accusations like that around makes you sound like some of your more ignorant and aggressive contributors (you’ll know whom I mean, I’m sure) and that is a great pity.

  • craig Post author

    Habbabkuk

    Of course it’s exaggerated, it’s a legitimate polemic technique. I think you know that too. Some things call for calm analysis, some for polemic. This is the latter.

    As I have constantly repeated, in London this happens absolutely all the time – the Chinese Embassy is especially assiduous at reporting dissidents. Your oblogation to protect diplomatic missions does not oblige you to proect them more than you would one of your own citizens. The police in London would NOT summons someone just because an Embassy complained, absent actual evidence of criminal activity – of which there is none.

  • nevermind

    Switzerland is and has been a supporter of fascist tendencies, however much this riles some. They supported the NSDAP in 1933 to the tun e of 30.000 Swiss francs, a tidy sum then and they are still supporting fascists to day, but they do not distinguish whether the money comes from the likes of Berlusconi, the Vatican bank’s shady deals or from genuine fascists like the Karimov clan.

    Switzerland’s democracy still has to undertake this retrospective look at its past and act, realise who is still influencing their society, its not just banks but also individuals in large trans national companies that have managed to keep out of the limelight which need to be pointed out for their deeds.

  • Clark

    Habbabkuk, historically, many populations have failed to realise as their governments have descended into fascism. We are seeing the signs now, in the US, the EU and Australia. Soon it may be too late to change sides. From my perspective, you currently seem to be on the wrong side. But maybe you prefer power over freedom. You have repeatedly shown signs of being a cyber-bully.

  • Andrew

    Geneva police station commented on their action stating that you were charged for illegal enter into a private property…!

  • Uzbek in the UK

    Evgueni

    From the top of my head some of the books that are interestingly link Swiss baking to the global money laundering network of world’s most corrupt systems.

    When States Fail: Causes and Consequences

    Rotten States: Corruption in Post-communism

    Offshore

    And the books that will blow your mind off. First ‘Secrets of Swiss Banking’ from an assets manager advising by all means to choose Switzerland (guess why but read the book first). And another one ‘Swiss Whitewash’ from the former Swiss parliament man one of those rare case critics of Swiss banking industry.

    Also in my previous links to the news reports two things are very clear. First is that dictators money (of world’s most corrupt and tyrannical dictatorships) in large quantities were in Switzerland and second that existence of this money (in large quantities) were made public only after this dictators lost their power and fallen from grace. Now imagine how much more money are in Switzerland and we can only speculate whether or not we will ever find out about their existence.

  • craig Post author

    Crab

    You beat me to it. Andrew reference please. I phoned them today and they claimed there was no record of the incident or the complaint.

  • Michel

    So if you did enter her private property…does it mean that you will be called to the Swiss Court? Or its only about Mrs. Tadjinaeva?

  • OldMark

    ‘There’s a New World coming.’

    I read that, Villager, and immediately thought of Judith Durham (showing my age again); thanks for that!

  • craig Post author

    Michel,

    We did not enter the property, or make any attempt to enter the property. It is strange that apparently a complaint has only been made about Ms Tdjibaeva and not about me. But it is even more strange that when I called the Geneva Police today to offer to give a statemet, they said they had no trace of any complaint or any incident.

  • KarimovaRevengeFantasist

    @Craig
    Thanks for the compliment and for your info on the behaviour of overseas diplomats here. I had no idea they behaved like that.

    @all

    If you require any absolute-beginner level expertise in connection with the Karimova sisters involving Perso-Arabic or Thai script or securities analysis (interpreting company accounts), I may be able to help.

    I have to learn how to craft long sentences, and how to punctuate them to mean what I intend them to before I am competent to write power prose like you lot, and of course I have to find a job, so I can’t always participate like others here.

    The obnoxious charity work these two sisters do is of course reminiscent of Jimmy Saville’s modus operandi, except they are using it to cover up theft. I am in the process of writing to the new CEO of Teliasonera, so that he is under no illusion about the wisdom of investing in Uzbekistan from his shareholders’ financial point of view. It is a fair amount of brain ache to do a decent letter, so my efforts may yet be overtaken by events. I am not confident anything is going happen from the Swedish and Swiss money laundering enquiries until things have been sorted out in Iran and Afghanistan. Barack Obama will to do his Kennedy-Cuban-missile-crisis stuff with Iran first (or they will have to detonate a bomb – yes, it is quite an irony that the pressure may be driving them to get a bomb, but without the sanctions, I am in no doubt they would get one anyway – the leadership’s ideology is too flawed to earn respect without support from a nuke?

    None of the Gulnara’s techniques of manipulating the business environment to siphon off every cent of Uzbek wealth to herself are beyond the comprehension of 8 year-olds (although it is certainly a challenge to communicate it in massive detail within their attention span). Anyway I’ll have to leave it there and sign off now. I hope Mutabar Tadjibaeva’s experience with the Swiss police is not too awful – it must be quite scary if you don’t speak any French at all. Roll on the day when Gulnara’s and Lola’s properties are seized by the Swiss authorities.

  • Uzbek in the UK

    Mr Murray,

    Seems like either swiss police just decided to act as you said ‘swiss way’ to protect wealthy residents or as they backed down. In any case it seems that whoever called police just wanted to get rid of you and as they were not in Uzbekistan they could not just beat you up and break your bones at the spot. So calling police was the only option.

    Is it possible to get local media involved? Taking into account some recent developments with Gulnara’s money laundering in Switzerland it might make some good headlines. Physically abused Human Right Activist is wanted for questioning by swiss police for just knocking a door of the daughter of Uzbek president, one of the most brutal dictators of the world and abuser of the wanted.

  • Uzbek in the UK

    KRF

    This day may never come. It seems their father can manipulate great power well. Even after Afghanistan is sorted it is unlikely that US lose its interests in Central Asia where Uzbekistan will always be their preferred ally. And also considering that Karimova’s have good relations with some of the world’s well known financeiers it is unlikely that the money they have stolen will ever be found and made public.

    And now about writing to the new CEO of Teliasonera. I would save myself a time as it is not worth the effort. You might know that there are two business strategies. One is short term investments which is usually risky but more profitable than the long term which is usually more stable but less profitable. Uzbekistan (providing certain peoples loyalty is bought) is perfect field for the short term investment. Operating in Uzbek market is perfect opportunity to make quick buck. Due to harsh governmental control the market is virtually closed for outsiders (except those who managed to buy loyalty of certain people) and thus competition is virtually inexistent. Plus (providing certain peoples loyalty is bought) one could avoid paying high taxes and could even convert money into hard currency, something that is again virtually impossible for others.

    Of course when bought loyalty is no longer investment is lost forever with virtually no options to appeal of any other kind of legal procedure. I am sure that Teliasonera is well aware of Uzbekistan and all sort of underwater stones there and their initial investment interests come from their short term strategy. I doubt that there are any serious business people in the world who could think of Uzbekistan as a field for the long term investment, including Pentagon.

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    @ Craig Murray (10h15) :

    OK, I understand what you say; perhaps I don’t yet have enough of the “habit of the blog” as we say to interpret your moods accurately enough.

    But I honestly do think that you should not throw aound words like “fascist” even for dramatic heightening (although its a temptation we’ve all fallen into, I’m sure) because you thereby encourage the loonier Eminences on this blog to lose touch even further with reality and say the first thing that comes into their mind.

    You’re not convinced?

    Look then at the comments from Clark at 10h22, with which he suggests either (2 interpretations are possibly thanks to his clumsy phasing) that the US, Australia and the EU have already descended into “facism”, or that the populations of those areas have failed to see that the US, Australia and the EU are descending into “facism”.

    Or look at Never-a-mind at 10h18, who calls Switzerland a fascist state, claims that “they” supported the NSDAP to the tune of 30.000 francs (who is “they”, by the way? The government? Individuals? Political parties? The Employers Federation?…)and that Switzerland still supports “facists” today (which facists, by the way? Or do you mean Berlusconi and the Vatican bank? They are facists?)

    Let us overlook the fact that individuals like Clark and Never-a-mind obviously have no idea of what facism is. The difference between you and them, Craig, is that you used the word for dramatic effect, if you will, but they actually believe the nonsense they’re spouting. And since I judge them – as the other Eminences – to be relatively impressionable characters, your use of the word, even if not meant seriously, is ill-advised.

    And now I’ll shut up 🙂

  • Habbabkuk (La vita è bella!)

    @ Uzbek (11h35) : is the former Swiss parliamentarian to whom you refer Jean Ziegler by any chance? Thx.

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