Gulnara Karimova: Kin of tyrant readies Cipriani catwalk

Uzbeki refugees protest Gulnara Karimova's fashion show earlier this week at Lincoln Center.

After she was kicked out of Fashion Week’s Lincoln Center site, dictator’s-daughter-turned-designer Gulnara Karimova is preparing a runway anyway, holding court today at Cipriani — but she’ll have more than fashionistas waiting for her.

Dozens of nationals from Uzbekistan are protesting her Fashion Week show, saying she uses forced child labor to pick the cotton for her fashionable fabrics, and they’re prepared to rally against her wherever she may be.

Yusuf Sabirov, 44, flew in from Arizona to boycott her runway show. An Uzbek refugee, Sabirov said he fled the country after the 2005 Andijan massacre, when hundreds of protesters were killed by soldiers led by Karimova’s father, Islam Karimov.

“I was in the [protest] when the soldiers came to shoot us,” he remembered.

Karimova’s line, GULI, showed at Fashion Week last year, but organizers apparently weren’t aware of her political past.

This year, they kicked her off the runway after protests and are reportedly refunding $30,000 in rental fees Karimova spent on her show.

“We’re horrified by the human rights abuses in Uzbekistan,” a Fashion Week spokesman said.

Gulnara Karimova attends amfAR’s Cinema Against AIDS Gala during the 64th Annual Cannes Film Festival

Sabirov and about 500 other refugees were resettled by the United Nations, but his daughter and son are still in Uzbekistan, forced to pick cotton. In order to attend school, he said, they must pick cotton for five cents a pound.
“I didn’t feel like we won,” he said. “My little girl is still going to pick cotton.”

Claims to infamy

Karimova’s father, Uzbekistan president Islam Karimov, has been accused of human rights abuses.
The United Nations reported that torture in Uzbekistan is “institutionalized, systematic, and rampant.” In one 2002 example, Karimov’s security forces boiled two political prisoners alive.
Karimov has been “elected” for three terms in a row with more than 90 percent support from voters — unmarked ballots, as well as ballots of those who did not vote, were automatically counted as “yes.”
And Karimova was not described favorably in Wiki-Leaks documents released last year, which called her “a greedy, power-hungry individual who uses her father to crush business people” and “the single most hated person in the country.”

Follow Emily Anne Epstein on Twitter @EmilyatMetro.


Florida man charged with murdering son to play…

A Florida man annoyed that his 16-month-old crying son was preventing him from playing video games suffocated the toddler, police said on Friday.


Powerful 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattles Mexico

A powerful earthquake struck Mexico Friday, shaking buildings and sending people running into the street, although there were no reports of major damage.


OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…


Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."


Whoopi Goldberg makes her debut as marijuana columnist

"It helps my head stop hurting, and with glaucoma your eyes ache, and she takes the ache out. It's wonderful," she said.

The Word

Kate Middleton made fun of Prince William's bald…

Kate Middleton and Prince William are in Sydney, Australia, right now, and it sounds like that brash Aussie sense of humor might be rubbing off.

The Word

Is Tom Cruise dating Laura Prepon?

"Mission: Impossible" star Cruise is said to be dating Laura Prepon, star of "Orange is the New Black."


'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…


Carmelo Anthony agonizing over Knicks future as season…

There’s still the cloud hanging over the franchise’s head as to the pending free-agent status of All-Star forward Carmelo Anthony.


Jets host players with eye toward NFL Draft

The Jets hosted a number of NFL Draft hopefuls for workouts on Thursday, with an eye toward some under-the-radar players.


Chris Johnson: I wanted to go to 'a…

Now that Chris Johnson is a Jet, the team has to figure out if one of the most explosive players in the NFL over the last half decade has anything…


Rangers' speed versus Flyers' size makes interesting playoff…

Among the myriad aspects that will make this Metropolitan Division semifinal series fascinating will be the battle between the Rangers' speed and the Flyers' size,…


VIDEO: 'Vein-scanning' may become the future of paying

Designed to make transactions quicker and easier, the technology works by scanning the unique vein patterns in each person's palm.


#FollowFriday: 10 of the smartest Twitter accounts

Spending lots of time on Twitter? You might as well learn something. Here are some of the smartest accounts to follow.


Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.


Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.