Thursday, September 01, 2011

Azerbaijan: Rights Defender, 6 Activists Convicted

End Crackdown on Critical Voices
 
Human Rights Watch, August 29, 2011

These trumped-up charges and flawed trials show how this government operates to silence critical voices. This is not the way any state – far less a Council of Europe member – should respond to grievances of its own people.

Hugh Williamson, Europe and Central Asia director

(New York) – Azerbaijani courts sentenced a human rights defender to three years in prison following a flawed trial on dubious charges of interference with parliamentary elections, Human Rights Watch said today. Separately, six other opposition activists were sentenced to terms of up to three years following unfair trials over their role in anti-government protests.

The Azerbaijani authorities should end its crackdown on critics of the government and release the imprisoned activists, Human Rights Watch said.

“These trumped-up charges and flawed trials show how this government operates to silence critical voices,” said Hugh Williamson, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “This is not the way any state – far less a Council of Europe member – should respond to grievances of its own people.”

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