Human rights activists called on the president to change the measure of restraint for Zeynalli and Sadigov
Baku/11.09.22/Turan: Members of the Solidarity Committee for Justice (Ədalət Naminə Həmrəylik Komitəsinin), which includes a group of human rights activists and journalists, appealed to President Ilham Aliyev to assist in changing the measure of restraint for journalist Avaz Zeynalli and lawyer Elchin Sadigov, who were arrested the day before:
To: President of the Republic of Azerbaijan
Mr. Ilham Aliyev,
Dear Mr. President,
On September 11, the Binagadi District Court of Baku, satisfied the submission of the Investigation Department of the Prosecutor General's Office of Azerbaijan, and chose a measure of restraint in the form of arrest for a period of 4 months against the journalist Avaz Zeynalli. Lawyer Elchin Sadigov was arrested for the same period.
Zeynalli is charged under the Article 311.3.3 (receiving a large-scale bribe) of the Criminal Code, and Sadigov is charged under the Articles 311 and 32.5 (assistance in receiving a bribe).
The defense argues that the prosecutor's office launched a criminal prosecution based on reports and media, and there is no specific complainant in the case.
Sadigov and Zeynalli deny the accusations and believe that the criminal prosecution is due to their professional activities.
Their conviction raises a number of questions, and we believe that the measure of restraint chosen in relation to Zeynalli and Sadigov is excessive and is counter to the principles of equality before the law, justice, and humanism.
It is noteworthy, that Zeynalli was charged under the Article 311.3.3, which provides for the responsibility of a representative of the authorities, though he and Sadigov are not representative of the authorities.
The charges were filed through the media, and in the future this fact put pressure on public opinion and decision-making by state bodies.
It should be taken into account that Zeynalli and Sadigov are well-known public figures and professionals in their field, who deserve respect and have done a lot for the formation of independent Azerbaijan.
From the very outset of the campaign to discredit them and conduct an investigation, Zeynalli and Sadigov did not shy away from the questions of either society or the investigation.
We regard their arrest as an excessive and unreasonable measure.
In this regard, we ask you to assist in changing the preventive measure and ensuring a transparent and fair investigation of what happened.
Solidarity Committee for Justice (Ədalət Naminə Həmrəylik Komitəsinin):
1. Novella Jafarova
4. Arzu Abdullayeva
7. Elchin Hasanzade
8. Sevinj Sadigova
9. Mehman Aliyev