Afghan Mukhtarly. Photo from personal Facebook page:

08 November 2017, 00:44

Baku court refuses to release Afghan Mukhtarly

On November 7, the Nasimi District Court of Baku considered the defence's petition to transfer the Azerbaijani journalist Afghan Mukhtarly from custody under the house arrest, Elchin Sadygov, his advocate, told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on May 29, Afghan Mukhtarly, who lived in Georgia since 2014, disappeared in Tbilisi. On the other day, he informed his advocate that he had been brought to Baku by force. On May 31, in Baku, the court pronounced the decision to arrest Afghan Mukhtarly. The journalist rejects all charges filed against him, including violation of the state border, smuggling and rendering resistance to a border guard. On October 23, the court left Afghan Mukhtarly in custody.

"Since the start of investigation, we have filed the petition for the fourth time. Until now, the court has rejected it upholding the prosecutor's argument that 'while at large, Afghan Mukhtarly can influence the course of inquiry.' But they failed to give any clear explanations and justifications on how Mukhtarly can influence the inquiry, being under house arrest and having limited contacts with the outside world," said the advocate.

On the other hand, he has noted, the preliminary investigation is already over; and this argument has lost its logical basis.

Nevertheless, the above court has rejected the petition, Mr Sadygov said.

"Keeping a sick person at the SIZO (pre-trial prison) is a form of inhuman treatment. We intend to raise all these issues in our additional complaint to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR)," said the advocate.

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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