End legal proceedings against lawyer Intigam Aliyev
Members and partners of the Human Rights House Network and the South Caucasus Network of Human Rights Defenders call upon the President of the Republic of Turkey to ensure that all charges against Azerbaijani human rights lawyer Intigam Aliyev are immediately and unconditionally dropped and compensation for the acts of ill-treatment he suffered in Ataturk Airport provided.
Thursday, 26 July 2012
See the full letter of concern on the right
Intigam AliyevOn 6 December 2011, on his way back to Baku, Azerbaijan, from Vilnius, Lithuania, where he took part in the Civil Society Parallel Event organised by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), Intigam Aliyev was at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, Turkey, to catch a connecting flight to Baku. After an altercation with a customs officer, Intigam Aliyev’s ticket was invalidated by the officer, Huseyin Kunt, and he was detained and kept in closed room for about four hours. During his detention, he was insulted and intimidated by police officers.
Intigam Aliyev immediately informed the Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) that he was being held in detention at the Ataturk airport. The Helsinki Citizens' Assembly in Istanbul sent lawyers to assist Intigam Aliyev at the airport late that night. The Istanbul Bar Association was also involved in this case. Several international organizations sent appeals and called on the Turkish authorities to release him.
On 7 December 2011 at 12:00, Intigam Aliyev was told that he would be deported from Turkey at 20:30 the same day.
That same day, whilst held in custody, Intigam Aliyev was beaten and injured by immigration officers, and repeatedly threatened not to speak out. He was beaten in a small room by Alaittin Sarıkaya, one of two civilian immigration officers who accompanied Intigam Aliyev, after he requested his passport to be returned to him. Servet Erkaraca, the other immigration officer, witnessed the beating and threatened Aliyev. When Intigam Aliyev asked them to be polite, he was taken to the police office where he was beaten on his head and body by the same officer, Alittin Sarikaya, in the presence of seven other civilian policemen and Servet Erkaraca.
A criminal case has been opened against Intigam Aliyev on 6 December 2011 when he was detained at the Istanbul Airport. He and his lawyers in Turkey had not been informed about it and did not receive any written information about these charges until 6 July 2012.
We therefore call upon the authorities of the Republic of Turkey to:
Immediately and unconditionally drop all criminal charges against human rights lawyer Intigam Aliyev;
Fully compensate Intigam Aliyev for the ill-treatment he suffered at the Ataturk Airport in Istanbul and for the moral and financial damages;
- Undertake an independent investigation into the accusations of ill-treatment against Intigam Aliyev, and bring those responsible to justice.
More information on Intigam Aliyev's case: http://www.humanrightshouse.org/Articles/17311.html.