Youth activists beaten and arrested in Azerbaijan

Last night, 8 July, around 8:00 p.m., Emin Milli (Abdullayev) and Adnan Hajizade were sitting in a restaurant with other young adults, discussing the activity of youth organizations related to the Internet. Up to them came two men, looking like sportsmen. After verbally insulting Milli and Hajizade and demanding that they stop talking politics, they violently attacked them, causing physical injuries.

Milli, who is the Alumni Network Youth Organization Coordinator and ANTV Online TV Leader, and Hajizade, who is the OL Youth Organization’s coordinator and a well-known video-blogger, are both engaged in civil journalism. They sustained several injuries before the restaurant staff and other youth were able to interfere and save them from the attackers. While Hajizade’s nose was broken, Milli possibly suffered a crack to a bone in his foot. Both were severely bruised and injured in their faces and on other parts of their bodies.

Milli and Hajizade immediately reported the incident to police, requesting medical care at the police station. Neither of them received such assistance. Both also demanded a lawyer, but when their lawyers came to the police station to represent the two, they were not allowed to see their clients for 17 hours, that is, until today 9 July, at 3 p.m.

Despite reporting to the police as victims, the police detained Milli and Hajizade after five hours of interrogation under article 221.2.1 (hooliganism) of the Criminal Code. The attackers were let free. The police has yet to make an official statement, providing further information and explaining the detention of Milli and Hajizade.

More information:

IRFS’s article on the same incident

Watch a video on YouTube:

Emin Milli and Adnan Haji-zadeh at Police Station

Letter from Leyla Yunus to Azeri Minister of Internal Affairs

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