Azerbaijani opposition activist convicted for slander for the third time in six months
Human rights activists recognized Aliyev as a political prisoner.
The head of the opposition Citizens and Development Party of Azerbaijan, political prisoner Ali Aliyev, was sentenced to another six months in prison. This is the third court verdict against Aliyev in the last six months. Now the term of his imprisonment has been extended to 1 year. The politician himself called the court decision politically motivated.
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Today, on June 23, the Yasamal District Court of Baku passed another, the third sentence for slander on the head of the Citizens and Development Party, Ali Aliyev.
This time, Ramiz Geyushev, a former functionary of the country’s ruling Yeni Azerbaijan party, initiated the trial. The judge found Aliyev guilty under article 148 (insult) of the criminal code and sentenced him to 6 months in prison.
Given the former convictions against the politician, the court combined this verdict with the previous two, issued in January and April 2022. Thus, the total term of punishment in the form of deprivation of liberty reached 12 months with detention in a colony. The term of punishment has begun on January 13, 2022.
Lawyer Javad Javadov, in an interview with Turan, called the verdict unlawful. According to the lawyer, there was no evidence of insult in this case, and Aliyev just addressed the reasons for Geyushev’s expulsion from the ruling party.
In September 2021, video footage appeared in the media with the participation of the then head of the regional organization of the New Azerbaijan Party, Ramiz Geyushov, in which he was captured watching a porn video at the workplace and masturbating. After that, Ali Aliyev, speaking on the YouTube channel Bumeranq TV, called Geyushov a “masturbator”.
The court did not apply amnesty to Aliyev. Article 148 (insult) of the Criminal Code fell under the amnesty announced in November last year, but the court did not use it.
Speaking at the court session, Ali Aliyev himself called the verdict politically motivated and a continuation of previous court decisions.
Ali Aliyev was sentenced on January 13, 2022 to 5 months in prison on charges of slander (Article 147.1 of the Criminal Code) based on a complaint from an officer of the State Border Service (SBS) Emil Jafarov.
Three months later, on April 15, the court increased the sentence by another month, also satisfying the complaint against Aliyev by another officer of the State Border Service, Ramin Adilov.
The reason for the lawsuits was the statement by Ali Aliyev in the press that the said officers could not survive the crash of the MI-17 helicopter on November 30, 2021 and that the helicopter could have been shot down by the Russian side.
In the crash of the State Border Service helicopter in November last year, 14 officers of this department were killed, and two survived.