[:en]The accused in the “Ganja Case” demand the interrogation of witnesses[:]

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[:en]The Baku Court of Appeal chaired by Judge Teyub Mukhtarov held a meeting in the case of one of the groups accused of Ganja events in July 2019.The figures of this case are seven people who were sentenced to various prison terms on charges of using violence against police officers.In particular, Yavar Ismailzade was sentenced to 9 years in prison, Zabil Mammadov – to 8, 5 years, Ganbar Garazade – to 7, 5 years in prison, Elvin Aliyev – 6 years, Isa Maharramzade – 8 years, Aydin Rustamov – 6 years, and Alim Yusifov – 7.5 years.

At the beginning of the meeting, the court announced the answers to requests to the police department in connection with the complaints of the accused, to torture.The General Directorate for Combating Organized Crime of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Nizami District Police Department received answers in which it was alleged that no one had been tortured and had filed complaints.The letter from the Baku pretrial detention center stated that the defendants were examined upon admission to the institution and that they had no injuries.However, the defendants stated that when they entered the detention center they were not examined at all.One of them said that those arrested were convoyed in Baku after their wounds had healed and the signs of torture disappeared.

Lawyer Aydin Rustamov said that it was not right to send requests to the authorities for which there are complaints.”They would not say “yes, we tortured people.” Our petition was not executed correctly. We asked to contact the General Prosecutor”s Office to investigate the torture,”said the lawyer.

The defendants further demanded that the persons who perjured against them be brought to court.The lawyers supported them, pointing out that the requirement of interrogation in court of persons who testified against the accused is the defendants’ right and this is in line with the European Convention on Human Rights.The accused, Elvin Aliyev, announced the falsification of evidence.Aliyev said that he was charged with committing a crime by prior conspiracy, while he met with other defendants in the case after his arrest.Alim Yusifov’s mother, addressing the judge, said that in the Shamkir social welfare center, her daughter-in-law was denied targeted social assistance, saying that her husband was a “political prisoner” and then they were not supposed to be helped.She asked the judge if her son was a political prisoner.Having received a negative response, the woman asked the judge to provide her with a certificate of this.The judge said that the court did not issue such certificates, promised to clarify the matter.

Isa Maharramzade’s mother said that her son was imprisoned for two months under the name of his father. He was arrested as Yunis Isa oglu Maharramzade. Only two months later, they corrected the name and sentenced him to 7.5 years in prison.The next court hearing is scheduled for August 2.

The case is considered by the judges of the Ganja Court of Appeal in the building of the Baku Court of Appeal.

* On July 3, 2018, in Ganja, an attempt was made on the then head of the city, Elmar Veliyev. A native of Ganja, Younis Safarov wounded Veliyev and his bodyguard.After that, in social networks, a protest action was scheduled for July 10 in front of the Ganja administration building against Veliyev.

On July 10, the Ministry of Interior reported on the unrest in Ganja, during which two police officers were killed, and mass arrests among believers began. About 80 people were brought to criminal responsibility. Another six people were killed while providing armed resistance.The Ganja Serious Crimes Court sentenced five groups of 40 people convicted to terms ranging from 5 to 8 years in prison. Over two more groups, the trials continue. All trials were and are being carried out in the building of the Sabunchu district court of Baku.In addition, a group of eight people was convicted by the Lankaran Serious Crimes Court. They received the largest time from 12 to 14 years.These people were convicted of other crimes, but they were arrested, as human rights activists note, immediately after the Ganja events.Another 16 people, including Yunis Safarov, who shot the former head of Ganja, are still under investigation.


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