DUSHANBE, December 20 (RIA Novosti) – Tajikistan on Friday denied allegations that relatives of President Emomali Rakhmon may have been involved in car thefts.
The German tabloid newspaper Bild claimed that some of 200 vehicles stolen in Germany and located on GPS trackers as being in Tajikistan could now be in the use in Rakhmon’s entourage. The report did not specify the number of cars or identify particular people but noted that 93 of the 200 stolen vehicles were BMWs.
Tajik presidential spokesman Abdufattokh Sharifzoda called Bild’s report “provocative and untrue.”
“No one knows how these 200 cars mentioned in the publication got to Tajikistan,” he said.
A spokesman for the Tajik Foreign Ministry, Abdulfaiz Atoyev, told journalists that the ministry doubted that the report in Bild was true.
Atoyev said that cars leaving Germany crossed several borders and customs checkpoints before reaching Tajikistan.
“If there were problems with the documents, they would have certainly been detained at borders before Tajikistan,” he said.
A high-ranking Tajik customs official said in July that only about ten cars stolen in Germany had been discovered in the country. Action was taken in all cases jointly with Germany police.
A Tajik traffic police spokesman said cars stolen in Germany mainly go through the Baltic states where their identification numbers are changed and fake documents created.