08 August 2019, 09:43
Court releases Azerbaijani oppositionist Azad Gasanov
On August 5, a court in Baku commuted the sentence to Azad Gasanov, a member of the "Musavat" Party, by replacing the remaining two months of his custody by conditional punishment. However, the activist intends to seek for an acquittal.
The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that Azad Gasanov, a political emigrant, was arrested on October 12, 2018, the day after he returned to Azerbaijan from Lithuania. He stated he had been forced to confess to drug dealing under a threat of torture. On July 22, Gasanov went on a hunger strike to protest against the protraction of his trial. On July 31, Gasanov said that his hunger strike was suspended.
Azad Gasanov was recognized as a political prisoner by human rights defenders.
According to the advocate, Osman Kyazimov, the prosecutor offered to re-qualify the accusation to a milder one and sentence Gasanov to one and a half years of imprisonment.
Gasanov himself insists that he had violated no laws, and had nothing to do with drugs. "I was arrested for being a member of the 'Musavat' Party and for criticizing the authorities' policies," he has stated.
Elshan Gasanov, the coordinator of the "Union for the Release of Political Prisoners", has treated the Azad's release as a positive fact, despite the conviction.
Author: Faik Medjid; Source: CK correspondent