DUSHANBE, July 13, 2012, Asia-Plus -- The Association of Internet Providers of Tajikistan (IPT) is seriously concerned over an attempt to impose centralized Internet censorship in the country.

The AIPT chairperson Parvina Ibodova considers that an initiative of the Communications Service under the Government of Tajikistan is incompetent because “the basic law of the country prohibits censorship of any kind.”

“Head of the communications service agency says the group is being set up for the purpose of preventing defamation and libel disseminated publicly or by the media, but such steps may be taken only after court decision,” Ibodova told Asia-Plus in an interview.  “Moreover, how those young people having technical education will assess that this publication is of libelous content or not?”

Ms. Ibodova also noted that the Communications Service had applied to Interne providers, asking them to assign specialists for the established group.  “I talked to all members of the Association of Internet Providers of Tajikistan.  Top managers of the Communications Service invited them to a meeting and demanded they provide one or two specialists to monitor online publications.  But I can assure that there is no any member of our Association in this group,” Ibodova said, adding that the group was already set up and held its first meeting.