Novaya Gazeta journalist Ali Feruz (Khudoberdi Nurmatov) will leave Russia on 15 February and fly to Germany, Echo of Moscow reported on February 10..
On February 09, the Basmanny Court provided additional explanations to the bailiffs; namely that it is impossible to deport Nurmatov to Uzbekistan because he is in danger there, but he can be allowed to leave the country if he submits a relevant statement. Finally, on February 10, the journalist's lawyer Daniil Khaimovich told Echo of Moscow that Nurmatov has a visa and ticket to Germany for February 15. Until that date, he remains in the temporary detention center for foreigners at Sakharovo.
Ali Feruz (Hudoberdi Nurmatov), himself an Uzbek citizen, was born in Russia where his mother, a Russian citizen, lives. He worked as a journalist in Uzbekistan, but the security services started targeting him and he was forced to leave the country. He returned to Russia where he again worked as a journalist in conjunction with citizen rights activists. Having lost his passport in 2012 which required him to return to Uzbekistan where he feared arrest, Feruz applied for asylum in Russia. The migration authorities, though, denied his request and detained him for deportation to Uzbekistan.
Ali Feruz faces imminent persecution and punishment for his journalist activity and sexual orientation in case of his deportation there.
Since 2014, Ali Feruz has collaborated with Novaya Gazeta, publishing articles on human rights violations in Uzbekistan.
In March 2017, Feruz was detained for violating migration legislation in Russia. After his speedy release, he found himself again in custody in August of the same year. After that, the Basmanny court decided to deport the journalist to Uzbekistan. The European Court of Human Rights has ruled against his deportation until it was able to hear Nurmatov's complaint.
In November 2017, the journalist was sentenced to be deported again - for violating the rules of work for foreigners (during his employment with the Novaya Gazeta). This decision was also not carried out because of the ECHR’s decision.