Afghan Mukhtarly near the court in Baku. May 31, 2017. Photo by Aziz Karimov

27 July 2018, 10:17

Journalist Afghan Mukhtarly hands his testimony about kidnapping over to Georgian investigators

Law enforcers have explained the protraction in the investigation of the kidnapping of the Azerbaijani journalist Afghan Mukhtarly in Tbilisi by the absence of his testimony. Now, they have all the data for an objective and timely completion of the investigation, the defence has stated.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that in May 2017, Mukhtarly was kidnapped in Tbilisi and brought to Baku. On January 12, the court sentenced him to six years in prison on charges of illegally crossing the border, smuggling and resisting a state servant. The inquiry into Mukhtarly's case in Georgia is not over yet.

Mukhtarly refuses to plead guilty. The USA, the European Union (EU) and the OSCE spoke out in his defence. The Amnesty International (AI) recognized the journalist as a "prisoner of conscience", and the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) awarded the priority status to his case. Mukhtarly is on the list of Azerbaijani list of political prisoners.

In his testimony, the journalist has stated that his kidnappers were Georgians as they talked Georgian on the phone. According to his story, through the holes in the bag, he could watch the road along which he was driven towards the Lagodekhi District, bordering on Azerbaijan.

There is a hope for essential progress in the investigation of Mukhtarly's kidnapping also because Giorgi Kvirikashvili, the Georgian Prime Minister, resigned in June, and "the new government will be easier to explain how they could kidnap a journalist in central Tbilisi," the "Turan" News Agency has noted.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on July 27, 2018 at 02:45 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Inna Kukudjanova; Source: CK correspondent

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