Azerbaijan: Activist concerned on new political prisoners

In a joint operation with their Azerbaijani colleagues, Russian police have apprehended at an undisclosed location Arif Huseinov, the brother of former Prime Minister Suret Huseinov on 26 January.  The human rights activist Eldar Zeynalov hopes that the international organizations should display “adequate reaction” to Sadai Nazarov`s arrest. (28-JAN-2005)
 

prisoner jailIn a joint operation with their Azerbaijani colleagues, Russian police have apprehended at an undisclosed location Arif Huseinov, the brother of former Prime Minister Suret Huseinov on 26 January.  The human rights activist Eldar Zeynalov hopes that the international organizations should display “adequate reaction” to Sadai Nazarov`s arrest. (28-JAN-2005)

Arif Huseinov is wanted on charges of involvement in the alleged coup d´etat against then President Heydar Aliyev masterminded by Suret Huseinov. Former Premier of Azerbaijan Suret Huseinov was sentenced in 1994 to life imprisonment for his imputed role in coup-attempt, but pardoned last year by President Ilham Aliyev.

Returned to Azerbaijan
Moreover, Saday Nazarov, who used to be a close associate of former premier Suret Huseinov,  was also arrested last week days after returning to Azerbaijan after 10 years as a political refugee in the Czech Republic. Czech NGOs have launched an appeal for Nazarov´s release. Nazarov arrived in Azerbaijan on January 11, 2005. During 10 years he lived in Czech Republic as emigrant and obtained the refugee status.

Activist concerned
Azerbaijani officials have repeatedly noted that there is not any single political prisoner in the country. The human rights activists have not agreed with this claim of the government officials and have documented the number of political prisoner. Director of Azerbaijan Human Rights Centre (AHRC) Eldar Zeynalov said that Nazarov also believed authorities´ promises on complete solution of the problems of political prisoners.  On January 20 Nazarov left Ganja city of Azerbaian for capital Baku, but was arrested on his way and interrogated. The human rights activist hopes that the international organizations should display “adequate reaction” to Sadai Nazarov`s arrest.

Poltical emigration
Commenting on Nazarov´s arrest, Zeynalov cited George Clerfayt, former PACE rapporteur on political prisoners in Azerbaijan: “If existence of political prisoners is unacceptable for European democracy, the same should be applied to political emigration.”  AHRC chairman Mr. Zeynalov shares Clerfayt´s position and said he hopes that “international organizations will adequately react to arrest of the citizen, who voluntarily returned to his motherland, despite grave accusations brought against him, and proved that he is not going to hide.”

 

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