January 16th, 2008
Today in Baku Appellate Court, under the chairmanship of the Judge Abid Abdinbayov, a court hearing on “Gundelik Azerbaijan” and “Realniy Azerbaijan” Newspaper Editor-in-Chief Eynulla Fatullayev’s case was conducted.

The Appellate Court upheld the decision adopted by the Grave Crimes Court to sentence the editor-in-chief to 8.5 years of imprisonment. E. Fatullayev’s lawyer Isakhan Ashurov told the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety that he now plans to file a complaint in the Supreme Court related to this decision. “As we know, this complaint will be useless, and we are also preparing to have the complaint considered in the European Court on Human Rights,” said Ahusrov.  

IRFS also notes that prior to the beginning of today’s hearing, National Security Ministry workers used metal detectors to search every single person seeking to observe the proceeding. Video and still cameras were not permitted into the courtroom, however Dictaphones were allowed. Some representatives from embassies and human rights advocates protested this, but they were also searched.  

Recall that, Grave Crimes Court Judge Mehdi Asadov convicted “Realniy Azerbaijan” and “Gundelik Azerbaijan” newspapers’ founder and Editor-in-Chief Eynulla Fatullayev was convicted of threatening terror, inciting national, religious and ethnic hatred and evading taxes and sentenced to 8.5 years of imprisonment.