Participants of the oppositional rally hold posters with Mekhman Guseinov's photo. Baku, March 10, 2018. Photo by Aziz Karimov for the "Caucasian Knot"

08 January 2019, 10:59

Seven persons punished for unsanctioned action in Baku

The organizer of the action in support of the hunger-striking blogger Mekhman Guseinov in Baku has been arrested for 25 days; two other protesters – for 20 days. Four other activists were fined.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on January 3, in Baku, law enforcers detained 15 protesters, who supported Guseinov. On January 4, the court found eight participants of the action guilty of violating the rules for holding meetings and sentenced them to fines and arrests. On January 6, police detained participants of a picket in defence of Mekhman Guseinov.

In 2017, Mekhman Guseinov complained of torture after detention, and on March 3, 2017, was sentenced to two years in prison on charges of defamation. On December 26, 2018, the Penitentiary Service announced that two months before the end of his prison term, Guseinov beat up a colony employee. Human rights defenders believe that the new criminal case is an act of revenge on the blogger for his criticizing the country's authorities.

Ogtai Gyulyalyev, the coordinator of the Centre for the Protection of Political Prisoners (CPPP), said that some 10-15 young people tried to hold an action in support of Guseinov at the Baku Court of Appeal.

"The young people wanted to express solidarity with the blogger in connection with his hunger strike. However, the action was dispersed," Mr Gyulyalyev has stated.

After the detention, activists were not allowed to contact their relatives and invite a lawyer of their choice, the lawyer Elchin Sadygov has noted, believing that "the action was peaceful and punishments in the form of arrests and huge fines are too severe."

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on January 8, 2019 at 05:04 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Faik Medjid Source: CK correspondent

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