Posters with the photos of Talekh Bagirzade, the leader of the "Muslim Unity" Movement. Baku, April 8, 2017. Photo by Aziz Karimov for the "Caucasian Knot"

05 February 2019, 13:42

"Muslim Unity" activists go on hunger strike in jail

Talekh Bagirzade, the leader of the "Muslim Unity" Movement, and Abbas Guseinov, an activist of the movement, are on a hunger strike in Gobustan Prison in protest against torture.

On January 27, the "Muslim Unity" wrote in the WhatsApp that Bagirzade and other convicted members of the movement board had faced "unprecedented pressure" in jail. In particular, a convict was placed into Bagirzade's cell, who had tried to set fire to his former cellmate in bed, while Guseinov was insulted, deprived of "elementary rights", and when he tried to protest, he was "exposed to torture."

The court found Bagirzade guilty of organizing riots after a law enforcers' operation in November 2015. Then, seven people perished, including two policemen.

In solidarity with Bagirzade and Guseinov, a journalist Arzu Abdulla has also announced a hunger strike.

Ogtai Gyulyalyev, the coordinator of the Centre for the Protection of Political Prisoners, told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent about the recent practice of torture spread in jails.

"Recently, at the trial on the case of illegal financing of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan (PFPA), defendants told about sophisticated torture ... Apart from severe beatings, they sent electric current through their bodies, each time increasing the voltage, "he said.

According to his story, local human rights defenders cannot document acts of torture, because they are not allowed into jails.

As noted by Bashir Suleimanly, the head of the Civil Rights Institute, in recent years, the "Muslim Unity" Movement has been exposed to severe repressions.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on February 5, 2019 at 01:00 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Faik Medjid; Source: CK correspondent

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