Rumours of Uzbek president's death raise questions over succession

State TV makes no announcement about Islam Karimov but situation may become clearer on country’s independence day

As in life, so in death: Islam Karimov’s regime was one of the world’s most secretive and opaque for a quarter of a century, and now his apparent demise is equally shrouded in mystery.

Uzbekistan’s president, a dictator who was ruthless with his opponents and even locked away his own daughter, is rumoured to have died on Monday, though there has been no official confirmation. On Tuesday, state television ran segments about fruit, vegetables and the upcoming Independence Day celebrations, without mentioning a word about the president’s health.

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