Action of protest by relatives of political activists who were deported from Germany

A group of people whose children were arrested after being deported from Germany held a protest in front of the German Embassy in Baku on May 31. They called on the German government not to remain indifferent to the fate of people who were expelled by that country despite the threat of arrest. However, no one came out of the Embassy to the protesters, and the police pushed the protesters away from the diplomatic mission 10 minutes after the start of the action.

The protesters were family members of PPFA activist Pyunhan Kerimli and political activist Samir Ashurov. They were supported by Gulmira Aslanova, the wife of convicted journalist Polad Aslanov, and Sevinj Sadigova, the wife of former political prisoner Afgan Sadigov.

They were holding portraits of 6 persons arrested after the expulsion from Germany and posters demanding their release. The protesters demanded a meeting with representatives of the Embassy. However, police officers pushed the protesters away by ripping the posters out of their hands.

“My son was detained on the street as he was leaving the tax department. At first the police said my son was detained on suspicion of carrying an illegal weapon. Then that ‘weapon turned into drugs.  Not only was my son arrested on slanderous charges, but his trial is being conducted virtually behind closed doors,” Pünkhan Kerimli’s father told reporters.

According to the man, he appealed to the Judicial Legal Council but in vain. Representatives of the German Embassy also failed to appear in court despite the appeal, the man said.

Nuran Ashurov, the wife of another arrested Samir Ashurov, also complained that the Embassy did not consider her appeals. “I have repeatedly written to them asking to be accepted, but there is no reaction. When we were expelled from Germany, they assured us that Samir would not be prosecuted, but he was arrested immediately upon arrival,” she said.

When asked to comment on the action, the German Embassy replied that a representative of the diplomatic mission gave an interview to a media outlet, which will be published and will express his position on this issue.

Recall that since October last year in Azerbaijan five activists previously expelled from Germany were arrested on criminal charges: Mutallim Orudzhev, Malik Rzayev, Punkhan Kerimli, Jafar Mirzoev and Samir Ashurov.

Another activist, Ziya Ibrahimli, was detained on 19 May immediately upon his arrival from Germany and administratively arrested for 30 days.

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