The public demands the immediate release of Emil Mammadov

About 50 representatives of civil society issued a statement calling on the authorities to release Emil Mammadov, the head of the NGO "Democracy Promotion." The statement authors remind us that NGOs "Promoting Democracy" was regisyered in 2007, and was engaged in problems helping the resolution of social and environmental problems of Salyan and the surrounding areas.

In December 2013 Mammadov appealed to President Ilham Aliyev in connection with the illegal use of public funds in Salyan. Thereafter, the head of the region, Tahir Kerimov announced Mamedov "enemy of the people."  On April 4 Tofig Gasimov, a staff of the NGO "Promoting Democracy", was arrested on trumped-up charges of hooliganism.

On April 7 at the instructon of the head of the  region, police filed a lawsuit against the NGO. After that, 13 leaders of various regional offices wre summoned to police,  where they said that Gasimov extorted money from them. Among these people there are a few close relatives of the  head of the region, who claimed that Emil Mammadov  himslef extorted money  from  them.

On May 13 Mamedov was arrested on charges of extortion (Article 182.2), and  can be imprisonef from  five to 10 years' imprisonment. The authors  of the appeal remind that Mammadov repeatedly unveiled corruption in the structures of the regional authorities, and raised his voice of protest against the violation of the rights of local residents.

The NGO headed by him more than once participated in projects  of the Web Civilian Control in the mining industry. All this annoyed the local authorities who launched a campaign of persecution aginst Mammadov.

At the same time, thanks to his efforts, an agreement was signed between the administration of  Neftchala Iodine Plant and the local community on environmental protection,

He was also active in the protection of the environment, protection of property rights of citizens in the construction of the Baku-Alat, rescuing cultural monuments discovered during archaeological excavations.

Mammadov was actively involved in protecting the rights of people affected by the devastating floods on the Kura River in 2010 and compensation of damage to residents  .

Authors of the statement condemning the arrest of  Mammadov demand his immediate release,  and call on  the international organizations to express an active stance in protecting their rights.

"We are convinced that Emil Mammadov  is innocent.  He should be released, and those who participated in the falsification charges against him should be brought to justice, "  reads the statement.-06D-

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