Michel Forst. Photo by Aziz Karimov for the "Caucasian Knot"

22 September 2016, 20:03

UN Special Rapporteur calls on to stop persecuting activists in Azerbaijan

Michel Forst, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights, has called on the Azerbaijani authorities to release all the arrested activists of public organizations, lift any restrictions on their departure from the country and stop persecuting their relatives. In his turn, an assistant to the President of Azerbaijan has treated Mr Forst's report as "biased."

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that Michel Forst's visit to Azerbaijan was scheduled for September 14-22.

"In the past three years, the Azeri civil society has faced the most difficult situation after the republic had gained its independence," Mr Forst said.

He recalled the problems of the newspaper "Azadlyg", whose leading columnist Seimur Khazi was arrested in August 2014; and 7.5 years of imprisonment imposed on the journalist Khadija Ismayilova.

In 2013, amendments were made in the legislation, which forbade the disclosure of the founders of commercial legal entities that hampered the work of the NGOs and journalists, conducting anti-corruption investigations.

In the opinion of Rapporteur Forst, the country's NGOs are virtually paralyzed. Thus, foreign donors must obtain permissions from the government to provide grants; and grants themselves must be registered.

Michel Forst touched upon the issue of pressure on the lawyers, who are defending journalists and activists.

The Forst's report fails to keep the balance, said Ali Gasanov, an assistant to the President of Azerbaijan on socio-political matters. He noted that the problem of refugees-internally displaced persons (IDPs) was not mentioned in the report.

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

Author: Faik Medzhid; Source: CK correspondent

All news

September 23, 2019 21:54

  • PACE Rapporteur calls on to revise attitude to refugees from Chechnya

    After his one-day visit to Grozny, Frank Schwabe, the Rapporteur of the PACE on human rights in Northern Caucasus, has admitted that the realities demonstrated to him by Chechen authorities contradicted the reports of human rights defenders on human rights violations in the republic, but promised to draw up an objective report for the Council of Europe.

September 23, 2019 21:39

September 23, 2019 18:21

  • Azerbaijani journalist claims being detained during protest rally

    Law enforcers did not let Tapdyg Farkhadoglu, a correspondent of the Voice of America (VOA), to cover a protest rally in Baku, and after his detention, he was advised against shooting any more "against statehood," the journalist himself reported. His colleagues treated the incident as pressure on freedom of speech.

September 23, 2019 18:02

September 23, 2019 17:52

News archive