HRC “Viasna” passes to Azerbaijan's Ambassador statement condemning arrest of well-known human rights activists
August 6 the Human Rights Center "Viasna" passed to the Azerbaijan's Embassy in Minsk a statement condemning the repression of President Aliyev against prominent human rights defenders of the country.
An officer of the Embassy took the statement from the representatives of the Board of the Human Rights Center "Viasna" Tatsiana Reviaka and Uladzimir Labkovich. She stated she would pass the appeal to the Ambassador, Isfandiyar Vahabzadeh.
The appeal concerns the detention on July 30 of Director of the Institute for Peace and Democracy Leyla Yunus, and earlier imprisonment Director of the Center for monitoring elections and democracy training Anar Mammadli was supported by other human rights organizations and civil society activists – the Legal Transformation Center Lawtrend, Human Rights Alliance, Office on the Rights of persons with Disabilities, the Belarusian Helsinki Committee, Dar'ya Korsak, Aliaksandr Atroschankau, Liavon Sadouski and Maryna Adamovich.
In his appeal to the official Baku it is stated that Azerbaijan has systematically violated the social and political rights, engaged in politically motivated prosecution of pro-democracy activists, public figures and human rights activists, who are prosecuted on fabricated charges. The rights of political prisoners are grossly violated during the detention, including the use of torture and other inhuman treatment. Representatives of the civil society of Belarus expressed outrage that Azerbaijan persecutes human rights defenders, having the status of the Chairman of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe - an organization designed to promote the international standards of human rights and democratic development.
Belarusian human rights activists also called on the EU and the United States, despite the economic contacts with the Republic of Azerbaijan, to take all possible measures to put pressure on the government, demanding the immediate release of political prisoners.
According to information from a lawyer for August 5, the state of Leyla Yunus, kept in custody, has deteriorated. She suffers from an acute form of diabetes. The restraint to her husband, Arif Yunus, has been changed from his own recognizance to three-month preliminary detention.
Meanwhile, the Azerbaijani authorities have commented on the appeal of EU commissioners in connection with the arrest of the human rights defender Leyla Yunus, calling the condemnation in their address "unjustified and unacceptable". "Such statements are rejected and are regarded as interference in the internal affairs of Azerbaijan and in the work of the judiciary, as an attempt to politicize actions of a criminal nature. Political pressure on the Republic of Azerbaijan in such a manner is absolutely senseless," stated the press service of the Foreign Ministry.
Let us remind that on August 2 the head of the Human Rights Club (denied registration by the Azerbaijani authorities) Rasul Jafarov was taken into custody for three months on economic charges, similar to the ones presented to Leyla Yunus. In May 2014, director of the Center for monitoring elections and democracy training Anar Mammadli and Executive Secretary of the organization, Bashir Suleymanli, were sentenced respectively to 5.5 and 3 5 years imprisonment, on similar charges.