Khadija Ismayilova. Photo: Fargana Novruzova,

07 December 2017, 03:09

UN Special Rapporteurs call on Azerbaijan to allow Khadija Ismayilova travel abroad

A ban on travelling abroad violates the Khadija Ismayilova's right to freedom of expression, claimed two UN Special Rapporteurs.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that Khadija Ismayilova appealed to the Binagadi District Court of Baku with a request to allow her to temporarily leave Azerbaijan to participate in journalistic courses in Riga. On December 8, 2016, the Supreme Court (SC) of Azerbaijan upheld the ban on leaving Azerbaijan for Khadija Ismayilova who was serving her conditional sentence.

Journalist Khadija Ismayilova became well-known for her journalistic investigations of corruption in Azerbaijan. In September 2015, she was sentenced to 7.5 years of imprisonment on the charges of economic crimes. In May 2016, the Supreme Court (SC) replaced her real term of imprisonment with 3.5 years of conditional sentence with a probation period of five years.

"Azerbaijan should lift the ban on travelling abroad for investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova and strengthen the independence of the media in the country," reported David Kaye, the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, and Michel Forst, his Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, in the statement released on December 5.

"The ban hinders the Khadija Ismayilova's right to freedom of expression, since it bans her from travelling abroad to report human rights violations. We call on the authorities not to restrict freedom (of Khadija Ismayilova) under false pretexts," the UN experts declared in their statement.

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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