Protest action of relatives of innocent soldiers killed under torture.

Protest action of relatives of innocent soldiers killed under torture.

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Question:  Some actions are taking place in connection with the investigation of the “Terter case”. In some cases, the original decisions have been cancelled. New arrests began. What conclusions can be drawn from the course of the investigation in this case?

Answer: The consequence has visible and invisible sides. The positive dynamics noted by you refers to the visible side. Here we observe the performance of part of the necessary work, but the matter is not limited to this, since there are also signs of the invisible side of the investigation. One gets the impression that officials of the prosecutor's office, especially the Military Prosecutor's Office and the Ministry of Defense, who actively participated in the organization and commission of the crime, are trying to shift responsibility onto each other. This cannot but affect the investigation. However, I would like to hope that it will not be possible to deviate from the main line, since the impunity of those who committed the "Terter crime" can finally undermine confidence in state institutions, serve as additional tension in the country, in society. And this is a serious political issue in Azerbaijani realities, and here, no one can be forgiven.

Question: Can we hope that from now on this process will be transparent and objective?

Answer: There are no grounds for such an assertion. A process that is under public control and the public is regularly informed about its progress can be transparent. So far this is not. And what they do is just an imitation of transparency. It would be wrong to call this process transparent. As for the objectivity of the investigation, even if desired, it is not easy to ensure it. The main reasons for this are the legal conditions in the country, socio-political realities and a number of other factors. One of these factors, and perhaps the most important, is that the majority of those who committed the crime are still in high government positions. Therefore, there is no need to talk about an objective investigation.

Question: How many people will be arrested if the investigation is transparent and objective? Can high-ranking officials whose names were mentioned in this process also be brought to the investigation?

Answer: If the investigation follows the letter of the law, then the number of persons to be punished, according to the most conservative estimates, can reach 250-350. Unfortunately, the gang that committed the “Terter massacre”, having made a lot of efforts, was able to involve as many people as possible in the commission of their dirty deeds and turn them into accomplices in crime. The reason for this is the lack of rule of law in the country and the weakness of legal thinking in general. Among the ordinary perpetrators of this crime were people who did not want to use torture, but, considering it an order, they committed these cruel deeds. Although Azerbaijani legislation states that no one can be forced to execute a criminal order. Everyone knows and understands that torture is a crime, regardless of the motive and reason. As for bringing high-ranking officials mentioned in the process to the investigation, I think that if this does not happen, then the "Terter crime" will remain unsolved. They are the main organizers of the crime. So this must definitely happen. After all, this is necessary in terms of ensuring the rule of law in the country.

Question: In recent days, there have been reports in the media about the mistakes committed by Najmeddin Sadigov. Is there really preparations for the arrest of Najmeddin Sadigov?

Answer: Najmeddin Sadigov is one of the two main defendants who played a leading role in the preparation and implementation of the "Terter Massacre". The second defendant is military prosecutor Khanlar Veliyev. Justice in Terter can only be ensured if they and a number of other officials suffer a well-deserved punishment. Otherwise, the crime will be considered unsolved, and the discussions related to it will continue to shake the agenda. As for the frequent mention of Sadigov in the media in recent days, I must say that this is a positive fact, indicating that more and more people in society are aware of the criminal acts of the former chief of the General Staff. Whether preparations are underway for the arrest of Sadykov or not, I cannot say, but I know one thing for sure - he must certainly be arrested. And not only because he is one of the main organizers of the "Terter Massacre", but also because Sadygov's gang continues to rule in the Ministry of Defense, which is the stronghold of the country. This must be put to an end, otherwise we will be doomed to all sorts of surprises from the gang, which is a source of threats to the Azerbaijani state.

Question: What should be done for an objective and transparent investigation of the "Terter crime" and punishment of all those responsible, regardless of their identity?

Answer: First of all, those who direct the investigation must have the will to do so. Although I am critical of the course of the investigation, I do not at all intend to question the work done so far. On the contrary, as a citizen and a public and political figure, I am obliged to support the investigation, provided that it is really conducted objectively and comprehensively. I also have to note with regret that it is not enough just the desire and efforts of the investigation team and even the Prosecutor General's Office for all those responsible, regardless of their personality, to be punished. To do this, political decisions must be made, otherwise it may not be possible to punish the participants in the crime who continue to hold high government posts. This is also one of the consequences of the absence of the rule of law. In a rule of law state, where the rule of law is ensured, there is no need for political decisions, law enforcement agencies perform their official duty, not paying attention to the political situation. It is not so with us. In my opinion, one of the first steps to be taken is the release of servicemen sentenced to long terms of imprisonment on libel. Law enforcement agencies should decide how and through what mechanism this will be carried out. Common sense suggests that if a re-investigation is appointed for one incident after 4-5 years, then at one time it was carried out incorrectly.

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