â€¨Uzbekistan: President Karimov and the executive branch dominate the legislature and judiciary, and the government severely represses all political opposition, freedoms of speech, and the press. The state exercises strict control over Islamic worship and suspected members of banned Muslim organizations and their relatives have been subjected to arrest, interrogation, and torture. Torture is reported to be endemic to the criminal justice system. Prisons suffer from severe overcrowding and shortages of food and medicine. The trafficking of women abroad for prostitution remains a serious problem. An aerial view of Muynak, Uzbekistan, next to the dried up Aral Sea is seen here on April 4.