Stefan Schennach. Photo

20 September 2017, 05:14

PACE co-rapporteurs call on Baku to release political prisoners

Stefan Schennach (Austria) and Cezar Florin Preda (Romania), the co-rapporteurs of the PACE Monitoring Committee, have called on the Azerbaijani authorities to speed up the reform of the penitentiary system, bring the country's legislation on NGOs to European standards and release activists arrested and sentenced for political reasons. The Council of Europe (CE) moves to a principled position on human rights in Azerbaijan, believe rights defenders interviewed by the "Caucasian Knot".

Stefan Schennach and Cezar Florin Preda made a statement following the results of their visit to Baku on September 14-16.

They called Faig Amirov's release from prison a "positive signal."

They have also called to remove all charges against Mekhman Aliev, the director of the news agency "Turan", and to cancel all restrictive measures against the news agency.

The co-rapporteurs visited journalist Aziz Orudjev, oppositionist Fuad Gakhramanly, and blogger Mekman Guseinov in prisons and also visited the Gobustan Prison.

"I would not wish anyone to stay in the Gobustan prison for a night. Meanwhile, soon it will be closed," Stefan Schennach wrote on Twitter.

According to Ogtai Gyulyalyev, the leader of the public alliance "Azerbaijan without Political Prisoners", the PACE delegates' visits to Talekh Bagirzade and Abbas Guseinov proves they are "not religious radical terrorists, but victims of repression."

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

Author: Faik Medjid; Source: CK correspondent

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