Azerbaijani blogger deported from Ukraine, jailed upon arrival in Baku
Azerbaijani blogger Elvin Isaev was detained in Ukraine and deported to Azerbaijan, where he almost immediately ended up in a pre-trial detention center.
Before, the Russian government tried to have him deported, accusing him of violating migration laws.
What he has been accused of in Azerbaijan is not yet clear.
Isaev is known for his video blogs which shower abuse at the Azerbaijani authorities.
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Threat of deportation – escape – deportation
Elvin Isaev had Russian citizenship and earlier lived in St. Petersburg, but in August 2019, the authorities decided to expel him, finding him guilty of violating the regime of stay in Russia.
Moreover, the European Court of Human Rights demanded that the so-called “rule 39” be applied to Isaev, according to which it is impossible to deport people who are threatened with political persecution in their homeland.
In September, the case was sent for a new trial, while Isaev, meanwhile, left for Ukraine. There he was detained on December 14 at the request of Azerbaijan and deported to Baku.
The State Migration Service of Azerbaijan claims that having arrived in Baku, Isaev turned himself in, underwent a medical examination and was put in a pre-trial detention center.
“The decision to have him arrested is due to the fact that the Nasimi District Court of Baku on August 22 decided to place Isaev in detention in a criminal case investigated by the Serious Crimes Investigation Department of the General Prosecutor’s Office,” writes the Caucasian Knot citing the State Migration Service. Hoever, what specific criminal case this entails is not explained.
“Isaev was deceived”
Fikret Huseynli, an Azerbaijani journalist and political émigré, believes that Elvin Isayev is the victim of deception: that he was lured to Ukraine by people who promised to help him move to Slovakia for money.
Fikret Huseynli himself, now living in the Netherlands, was also detained in Ukraine in 2017 and nearly extradited to Azerbaijan – he was accused of fraud and illegal border crossing.
Earlier, several Azerbaijani bloggers, journalists and political activists were already deported and extradited from Russia and Turkey.
Social media reaction: from empathy to gloating
Many in Azerbaijan are very skeptical of the activities of Elvin Isaev. Therefore, a debate broke out on social media between those who sympathized with Isaev and those who gloated over his deportation.
Some typical comments:
“It’s not enough just to swear to be an oppositionist”
“Isaev insults Ilham Aliyev, and Ilham Aliyev insults the entire Azerbaijani people!”
“In his recent video, he supported the Donetsk separatists, told them, Russia is with you!. Ukraine did right to deport him!”
“And under what article will this dirty Azerbaijani regime condemn him?”
“It serves him right. People like him only dishonour the name of the opposition.”