a JAMnews video of mothers saying how and why their children were sentenced
A ‘Happy Slave Day’ inscription appeared on a monument dedicated to Heydar Aliyev on the eve of his birthday – 10 May 2016. Activists Giyas Ibragimov and Bayram Mammadov, who wrote the inscription, were arrested on charges of drug trafficking the same day.
Many in Azerbaijan expected Bayram and Giyas to be pardoned in May 2018 in honor of the 100th anniversary of the First Republic. A mass pardoning was announced at the beginning of the year in parliament by several of its members who are leaders of the ruling party, such as Siyavush Novruzov, Deputy Executive Secretary of the Yeni Azerbaijan Party who called for the release, among others, of ‘young activists who fell under the bad influence of the opposition’.
However, only 12 political prisoners, of which there are already over 140 in Azerbaijan, were released. The ‘prisoners of the monument’ are still in prison.