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Youngest daughter takes distance from Uzbek president

Islaam Karimov

Said she want to be seen as a person with her own principles and viewpoint

Islaam KarimovMoscow: Lola Karimov-Tillyaeva, the youngest daughter of Uzbekistan president Islam Karimov has distanced herself from the policies of her father, who has ruled the ex-Soviet Central Asian state for more than two decades.

Lola, 35, Uzbekistan’s permanent representative at UNESCO in Paris, in an interview to the BBC Uzbek Service also said that she has not been in contact with her ambitious elder sister, Gulnara, who is seen as a possible presidential successor, for 12 years.

“We have never hidden this from anyone. We have neither family nor friendship contacts and don’t even meet each other for family activities,” she said, in her first open interview to Western media.

 “With the years, the difference only grows,” she said. Lola’s elder sister Gulnara, 40, is known as a pop star and fashion designer and runs jewelry and cosmetics businesses and number of charity funds.

Until recently Gulnara was Uzbekistan’s permanent representative in the United Nations in Geneva and its ambassador in Spain.

Turning to her father’s policies, Lola said she shared the views that “unemployment and lack of opportunities breeds radicalization of the population.” President Karimov has been criticized for using the pretext of battling religious extremism to silence any dissent.

When asked why she took a French news site, Rue89, to a French court last year, Lola said that it hurts her when she was referred to only as a “dictator’s daughter” in the media. She said,“ I know my name outpaces myself, but I want to be seen as a person with her own principles and viewpoint,” she said.


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