Activists to stage rally in central Baku on 14 May

Baku/10.05.22/Turan: A group of activists has decided to hold a protest at Fountain Square in Baku on 14 May against increasing violence and threats against public figures.

The appeal on the rally organization says that cases of violence against public figures and journalists in Azerbaijan have recently intensified and these crimes remain unpunished.

In particular, the facts of detention at the peaceful action of politician Tofig Yagublu, who was later taken out of the police station, brutally beaten and abandoned on the heath; the murder with particular cruelty of the journalist and LGBTI activist Avaz Hafizli; the abduction and inhuman treatment of public activist Bakhtiyar Hajiyev were mentioned.

The most recent case of abuse was the attack on journalist Ayten Mammadova, who was threatened and her underage daughter insulted by an unidentified man, holding a knife to her throat.

The inaction of law enforcement agencies in investigating these crimes contributes to a climate of impunity that encourages further attacks on activists and journalists.

"We believe that these attacks are not the last, and unless society raises its voice in protest, more serious crimes, including political assassinations, will follow. We call for participation in a peaceful protest march on 14 May, which will start at 15.00 from Fountain Square to the Interior Ministry building, demanding an end to these horrific crimes, finding and punishing those responsible," the address further reads.

The organizing committee of the rally included 24 political and civic activists.

In turn, Elshad Hajiyev, head of the media and public relations department of the Interior Ministry's press service, said that public and political processes in the country are regulated by the law.

"According to the law, any illegal actions or attempts to protest in the capital city that are not coordinated with Baku city executive authorities will be stopped," he said.-03B06-

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