Arif (to the left) and Leyla Yunus. Photo by Aziz Karimov for the "Caucasian Knot"

02 June 2016, 15:58

ECtHR condemns Azerbaijan for torturing Arif and Leyla Yunus

The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) has pronounced a decision concerning the complaint of Azerbaijani human rights defender Leyla Yunus and her husband Arif Yunus, who complained about being tortured during their arrest. The ECtHR has obliged the Azerbaijani authorities to pay the Yunus spouses 13,000 euros for compensation for moral damage.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on December 9, 2015, the Baku Court of Appeal (BCA) commuted the sentence to the Yunus spouses: the imprisonment was replaced with conditional sentence. On April 19, 2016, the Yunus spouses left Azerbaijan for medical treatment.

The ECtHR has found a violation of the applicants' rights under Article 3 (prohibition of torture) and Article 34 (individual applications) of the European Convention on Human Rights.

The ECtHR has treated the Azerbaijani authorities' failure to provide the Yunus spouses with "quality medical care" during their pre-trial detention in custody as "torture and inhuman treatment".

As far as the violation of the rights under Article 34 is concerned, then, according to advocate Djavad Djavadov, it "is connected with the removal from advocacy of Khalid Bagirov, who defended their rights" and who was deprived of access to the arrested Yunus spouses.

Djavad Djavadov has also noted that the ECtHR has completed the communication in two other complaints filed by the Yunus spouses under Article 5 (right to liberty and security of the person) and Article 18 (limits on use of restrictions on rights) of the European Convention on Human Rights. In the near future, the ECtHR will announce its decisions concerning those complaints.

Elshan Gasanov, the leader of the Centre for monitoring of political prisoners, has noted that the Yunus spouses will have to undergo long-term medical treatment because of their diseases aggravated in prison.

Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.

Author: Faik Medzhid; Source: CK correspondent

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