In his Mother’s Day speech last month, Tajikistan's President Emomali Rahmon criticized women who wear “foreign” clothing, especially the black veils associated with conservative Islam. Within days, officials began threatening shopkeepers who sell hijab, the Islamic head covering for women; a few days later state television reported that sex workers are using hijab to drive up their prices.

The South-Caucasus representative for Human Rights Watch, Giorgi Gogia, was en route to Tbilisi on March 31 after...
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