Baku metro staff assaults journalist

July 3rd, 2013

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Today journalist Aynur Elgunesh has been subject to physical abuse while performing her professional activity, said the journalist in a phone call to the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety (IRFS). According to Elgunesh, the incident happened while she was covering the argument between a citizen and a subway employee in the Hezi Aslanov station.  

“I went up and told them that I am journalist, and asked what the problem was. Citizen Khayal Imanov complained that the money he had inserted into the fare machine was not loaded onto his metro card. He then asked the female controller to let him through the subway fare gates as his money was left in the machine. I tried to take their photo when the controller attacked me, calling me names. Instead of stopping her, the police used force against me. They were shoving me rudely which left scratches on my arm” says the journalist.

The journalist added that she and the complainant, Khayal Imanov were received by the chief of the Hezi Aslanov station, Boyukaga Yolchuyev, who apologized for his employee’s behavior and promised to take necessary measures against her. Elgunes says she submitted a written complaint to the subway management, and will appeal to the court should no action is taken.