Arab Today, arab today azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years
Last Updated : GMT 04:35:46
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years

Azerbaijani journalist Khadija Ismayilova (2L)
Baku - AFP

Azerbaijan on Tuesday sentenced award-winning investigative journalist and anti-graft campaigner Khadija Ismayilova to seven and a half years in jail on corruption charges she denounced as trumped-up, her lawyer said.

Considered Azerbaijan's most prominent critical journalist, Ismayilova, 39, served as bureau chief for the local service of the US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty network between 2008 and 2010.

"Baku's Court for Serious Crimes sentenced Khadija Ismayilova to seven and a half years in prison for economic crimes, including illegal entrepreneurship and tax evasion," her lawyer Fariz Namazly told AFP.

"We will appeal the illegal verdict," he added.

Held in pre-trial detention since December, Ismayilova had denounced her prosecution as politically motivated and an attempt to stop her critical reporting.

The journalist has fearlessly probed the alleged vast riches amassed by President Ilham Aliyev and his family.

In her final statement to the court on Monday, Ismayilova vowed the authorities "won't be able to force me to stay silent, even if they sentence me to 15 or 25 years."

Ismayilova's mother Elmira Ismayilova, who was present in the courtroom on Tuesday, told AFP: "Khadija said she is strong enough to bear everything as she fights for a right cause."

Human Rights Watch said: "The outrageous verdict against Khadija Ismayilova shows the Azerbaijani authorities' willingness to subvert the law to exact revenge against critics."

"Her conviction and sentence should be immediately set aside," the group's executive director Kenneth Roth, said in a statement.

Denis Krivosheev of Amnesty International rights watchdog was equally scathing, saying it was "yet another unfair trial relying on fabricated charges."

"Ismayilova's only crime was to investigate high-level government corruption with courage and persistence," said Johann Bihr, the head of Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk at the Reporters Without Borders media advocacy group.

- 'Enemy of the government' -

In a leaked diplomatic cable from 2009 published by Wikileaks, Aliyev is said to have described Ismayilova as an "enemy of the government", asking the US ambassador to Azerbaijan to intervene to have her sacked by Radio Liberty.

In December, Azerbaijani police raided and closed the Baku offices of Radio Liberty in a move that Washington called deeply disturbing, aggravating concerns about the treatment of non-state media in the Caucasus nation.

In 2012 Ismayilova said she was the victim of blackmail, after a covertly-filmed video with sex scenes purportedly involving her was posted on the Internet.

Rights groups said the footage was released by supporters of Aliyev in retaliation for Ismayilova's work exposing his daughters' alleged business interests.

Rights groups accuse the government of Azerbaijan of stepping up pressure on opponents after Aliyev's reelection to a third term in 2013.

Earlier this month, Azerbaijan jailed a prominent rights activist couple to lengthy jail terms in a case that was also decried as politically motivated.

The high-profile trials kicked off after Azerbaijan in June hosted with great fanfare the inaugural edition of the European Games, a sporting extravaganza billed as Europe's answer to the Olympics.

In the same month, U2 singer and political activist Bono spoke out in support of six jailed Azerbaijani activists including Ismayilova and Yunus from the stage at concerts in Canada.

Freedom House says there are now more than 80 political prisoners in Azerbaijan.

Aliyev, 53, strongly denies accusations of rights abuses, while his administration has dismissed such criticism as a smear campaign.

Aliyev took over after the death of his father Heydar Aliyev, a former KGB officer and communist-era leader who had ruled newly independent Azerbaijan with an iron fist since 1993.

 

arabstoday
arabstoday

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years Arab Today, arab today azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years

 



Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years Arab Today, arab today azerbaijan jails top journalist for 7 and a half years

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Designer Aql Faqih aspires to innovation

GMT 18:41 2017 Friday ,20 October

Designer Aql Faqih aspires to innovation
Arab Today, arab today Malaysia Airlines picks new CEO

GMT 12:54 2017 Saturday ,21 October

Malaysia Airlines picks new CEO
Arab Today, arab today Etiquette expert underlines importance of gifts

GMT 17:52 2017 Sunday ,03 September

Etiquette expert underlines importance of gifts
Arab Today, arab today Residents get glimpse of Raqa in ruins

GMT 07:10 2017 Saturday ,21 October

Residents get glimpse of Raqa in ruins
Arab Today, arab today Hiring not part of Alibaba pledge

GMT 11:26 2017 Wednesday ,18 October

Hiring not part of Alibaba pledge
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today World's deepest lake in peril

GMT 15:54 2017 Friday ,20 October

World's deepest lake in peril
Arab Today, arab today Ex-French minister Dati wants tough action

GMT 10:54 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Ex-French minister Dati wants tough action
Arab Today, arab today Delhi braces for pollution 'airpocalypse'

GMT 16:07 2017 Friday ,20 October

Delhi braces for pollution 'airpocalypse'
Arab Today, arab today The history of solar eclipses

GMT 05:16 2017 Sunday ,20 August

The history of solar eclipses
Arab Today, arab today EU raids automaker BMW

GMT 11:06 2017 Saturday ,21 October

EU raids automaker BMW
Arab Today, arab today Sweden to get biggest car factory

GMT 14:10 2017 Friday ,20 October

Sweden to get biggest car factory
Arab Today, arab today Actress Mona Zaki praises husband’s role

GMT 08:15 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Actress Mona Zaki praises husband’s role
Arab Today, arab today Massacre fears spark race

GMT 19:09 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Massacre fears spark race

GMT 08:57 2017 Wednesday ,18 October

Actress Shery Adel happy for Egypt’s qualification

GMT 18:15 2017 Monday ,16 October

British actress becomes fifth woman

GMT 16:53 2017 Tuesday ,05 September

Youssra depended on colored foam

GMT 16:00 2017 Wednesday ,18 October

Climate-disrupting volcanoes helped topple

GMT 10:46 2017 Saturday ,05 August

Nanis reveals simple ideas for home renovation

GMT 09:56 2017 Friday ,20 October

Privacy Groups Warn of Perils

GMT 08:04 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Second US judge orders freeze

GMT 17:12 2017 Monday ,07 August

Al-Shawaifi reveals secrets of total solar eclipse

GMT 20:46 2017 Thursday ,19 October

Qualcomm files lawsuits in China to ban iPhones

GMT 16:53 2017 Saturday ,02 September

Mai importance of gifts during Eid Al-Adha
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday