Update: see in the Comments a terrific contribution from Michael S who gives excellent background
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Craig is back with us, this time sniping at the British Ambassador in Tashkent, Rupert Joy.
What has Rupert Joy done wrong this time? Shock! He’s attended a fashion event led by Gulnara Karimova, the glamorous daughter of the Uzbek President:
“Rupert Joy should be deeply ashamed of himself,” the former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray, said when he learnt about Joy’s participation in the style.uz fashion week, organised by Uzbek President Islam Karimov’s eldest daughter Gulnara…
Having enslaved their country to ensure stratospheric profits for themselves, the Uzbek elite and Gulnara Karimova, in particular, cannot but be concerned with their image in the world which they are trying to improve by splashing huge money earned by others on this.
Craig Murray is convinced that Karimova wants to improve her image to strengthen her political ambitions. One of their means of doing this is to involve ambassadors of countries that enjoy a good reputation in the world in her events.
Gulnara did not invite Rupert Joy because she fancies him, but because it helps boost Uzbekistan’s image of respectability even though it is one of the world’s worst dictatorships,” he said.
“Joy’s attendance is in effect an endorsement of both Gulnara and of the whole regime,” the former ambassador added.
To show how cool and tough he is on this subject, Craig boasts on his own site that he has been writing to Rupert to ask him to explain himself and gives his readers Rupert’s email address so that they can pile on the pressure.
Here is what I have posted on Craig’s site by way of comment (fair’s fair – Craig has a very open and impressively spam-free comments policy):
I am baffled by your continuing sniping at those who associate closely with Gulnara Karimova, including HMA Tashkent.
How can you brazenly say this:
“Rupert Joy should be deeply ashamed of himself,” the former UK ambassador to Uzbekistan, Craig Murray, said when he learnt about Joy’s participation in the style.uz fashion week, organised by Uzbek President Islam Karimov’s eldest daughter Gulnara…Joy’s attendance is in effect an endorsement of both Gulnara and of the whole regime.”
What driveling hypocrisy.
You yourself did something even more outlandish. You invited the lovely Gulnara to the Queen’s Birthday Party you hosted in Tashkent, letting her guzzle sausages on sticks paid for by UK taxpayers.
Hard to do more to ‘endorse’ the regime than that? You write in your very own book how proud you were that she had attended the event – a sign of your own mighty influence:
Maybe Rupert Joy is simply following your own wily example of getting close to the Uzbekistan regime with a view to influencing it by stealth?
This is too much.
Craig, there is just no point in railing against a former colleague who is doing exactly what you did!
Do stop it. You’re making all us former Ambassadors look ridiculous.