The family of murdered journalist Elmar Huseynov, living in Norway, visit Azerbaijan
The murder of Elmar Huseynov
The wife and son of Elmar Huseynov, a journalist killed 18 years ago in Azerbaijan, who were in exile, visited their homeland. Information about their arrival appeared two weeks after the family of the deceased journalist returned to Norway, where they have been living for the past 17 years. It is said that the visit was organized by the State Committee for Work with the Diaspora of Azerbaijan.
Colleagues of Huseynov are sure that the journalist was killed on order of the authorities. His wife also repeatedly expressed this opinion.
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“The trip was organized by the State Committee for Work with the Diaspora”
The day before, photos of the wife and son of Elmar Huseynov, were circulated on social networks, taken in Baku at the grave of the deceased journalist and in Shusha.
According to information provided to Abzas Media by lawyer Aslan Ismailov, Huseynov’s family members arrived in Baku two weeks ago and have already returned to Norway, where they live permanently:
“The trip was organized by the State Committee for Work with the Diaspora. They became interested in the family and organized a trip. We arrived and stayed here for two weeks, saw our homeland, visited Elmar’s grave, met with relatives and returned to Norway. They only contacted me, they didn’t want to communicate with anyone.”
After the murder of Huseynov, his wife Rushaniya Huseynova stated that she received threats for a year after the incident because of her claims that her husband was killed by the authorities. For this reason, she and her son left the country in 2006 and were granted asylum in Norway.
Aslan Huseynov, who was 1 year and 4 months old when he left the country and was remembered for a picture where he kissed a photograph of his father tied with a black ribbon, told gununsesi.info that he first met his relatives in Baku and visited his father’s grave.
“I came to Baku for the first time in many years and was overwhelmed with emotions. I met my relatives for the first time, saw my homeland, my city. I visited the grave of my father, Elmar. It was a very sad moment. I know that Elmar loved his city very much. Like Elmar, I fell in love with the city of Baku. I liked Baku more than other cities in Europe, because it is not the most beautiful, but the most native city.”
As Abzas Media was told in the press service of the State Committee for Diaspora Affairs, the visit of the journalist’s family to the country was organized at the request of Rushaniya Huseynova.
“This is the first time she has made this request,” the committee said in a statement.
As part of the trip, Huseynov’s wife and son also visited the city of Shusha, which returned to Azerbaijani control after 28 years of occupation as a result of the second Karabakh war.
Despite the fact that 18 years have passed, the perpetrators of the murder have been found
Elmar Huseynov was the founder and editor-in-chief of the Monitor magazine, which sharply criticized the Azerbaijani authorities. He was killed by 7 bullets in front of his apartment on March 2, 2005.
Prior to his assassination, Elmar Huseynov was repeatedly brought to court in administrative claims and criminal cases for criticizing the President of Azerbaijan, members of the government and officials. A total of 34 cases were initiated against him. The authorities have repeatedly blocked the publication of the publication headed by him. Before his death, he told his colleagues that he was regularly threatened with death and demanded to stop publishing about the President of Azerbaijan and members of his family.
The President of Azerbaijan also condemned the incident in his official statement, released the day after the incident, on March 3, and described the assassination as “a big stain on the country’s reputation and a blow to the democratic development of Azerbaijan.”
Initially, a criminal case was initiated in the General Prosecutor’s Office for serious crimes under the article “premeditated murder”. A month later, the criminal case was changed from “premeditated murder” to Article 277 of the Criminal Code (terror). Also, the criminal case was withdrawn from the Prosecutor General’s Office and transferred to the then Ministry of National Security (abolished since 2015).
In the case, two citizens of Georgia, Tair Khubanov and Teimuraz Aliyev, were declared suspicious persons. According to the information made public by the investigation, after the murder they fled to Georgia.
These men, put on the international wanted list, were discovered in Georgia by a group of Azerbaijani journalists. When talking to Azerbaijani journalists, they were surprised by the accusations and said that they did not know that they were wanted.
The question of how the law enforcement agencies of Azerbaijan could not find these people, who are easily found by journalists and who normally continue to live at the address where they are registered in Georgia, remains unanswered.
Although 18 years have passed since the murder, the perpetrators and customers have not been punished.
Azerbaijani government fined 30,000 euros for the murder of Elmar Huseynov
In 2017, the European Court of Human Rights found Azerbaijan guilty of violating a journalist’s right to life in the Rushaniye Huseynov v. Azerbaijan case related to the murder of Elmar Huseynov. According to the decision, the Azerbaijani government was fined 20,000 euros for moral damage and 10,000 euros for legal costs.