Yesterday, 6 May, in the Baku Appellate Court, under the chairmanship of Judge Medina Bagirova, “Azadlig” Newspaper correspondent Agil Khalil’s lawsuit against the investigator of the Chief Prosecutor’s Office’s Investigation Department on Grave Crimes Ali Guliyev, and AzTV, “Lider”, “Space” and ATV TV channels was not fulfilled. The Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety was told this by Agil Khalil’s lawyer, Media Rights Institute employee Elchin Sadigov.
According to E. Sadigov, the lawsuit was put forth due to alleged insult of honor and dignity, damage to reputation and intrusion into Khalil’s private life, and the court was asked to demand that the TV channels and the investigator pay compensation for moral damages. The lawsuit stems from footage prepared by the Chief Prosecutor’s Office’s Investigation Group and aired on abovementioned channels.
The Appellate court upheld the decision that the Yasamal District Court issued on 28 August 2008.
On 7 April 2008, AZTV, Lider, Space and ATV TV channels broadcast footage in which it was alleged that A. Khalil is homosexual and he was stabbed by a former lover. Prior to this, Khalil was beat up on 22 February 2008 by officials from the National Security Ministry while attempting to research the illegal cutting down of trees in a public park. Video footage of the incident exists on Youtube (http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=422fu6Xn6P0). Khalil was extremely vocal about the incident and was stabbed in the chest soon after, on 13 March 2008. Some human rights activists believe this was an attempt to silence Khalil. Khalil alleged the people involved in the stabbing had been watching him for several days, however the government alleged, as is indicated in the footage on AZTV, Lider, Space and ATV TV channels, that Khalil was stabbed by a former lover. For more information on Khalil’s case, see IRFS’s special report: http://www.irfs.az/component/option,com_remository/Itemid,32/func,fileinfo/id,16/lang,eng/
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