The day before, a protest action was held in the center of Baku demanding the release of Niyameddin Akhmedov, a member of the Party of People’s Front of Azerbaijan, recognized as a political prisoner.
A group of PPFA activists marched along the “Trade” (pedestrian part of Nizami str.) chanting: “Freedom to Niyameddin Akhmedov!”, “Freedom to political prisoners!”, ” Release or leave!”, “Resign!”, etc.
Police patrols appeared when the protesters reached an intersection of “Trade” and Rasul Rza str. Following talks with the police, the participants of the action dispersed.
* Niyameddin Akhmedov was a bodyguard of the PPFA leader Ali Kerimli on a voluntary basis. He was detained on April 15, 2020 and arrested next day by court order for 30 days. The court found him guilty under Articles 211 (violation of the quarantine regime) and 535 (disobeying the police) of the Code of Administrative Offenses.
Later, he was charged under Article 214-1 (financing of terrorism). In particular, the investigation stated that he received money from the opposition leader Gabil Mammadov, currently residing in Germany, “for committing acts of terror.” At the trial, the prosecutor asked to convict Akhmedov for 15 years.
However, the true cause for Akhmedov’s arrest is pressure on the Party leader. Thus, the investigation tried to force Akhmedov to defame Ali Kerimli, but he withstood numerous tortures. Severe pressures of the authorities are explained as being due to the fact that they are still seeking to destroy the PPFA.