Brawl Breaks Out at Courthouse during Nardaran Trial

October 14th, 2016

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Summary: Hearing 26

  • Police Sergeant Nasib Asadullayev, officer of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, testified at the court hearing as a witness. He said that some 100 to 150 people gathered outside Sabunchu District Police Department on 05 November 2015 and demanded Elchin Gasimov’s release;
  •  Witness Anar Ibrahimov, officer of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, took the stand next and said that the crowd gathered in front of Sabunchu District Police Department on 05 November 2015 threw rocks at the police officers, and one of the stones hit him in the stomach;
  • Israfil Mustafayev, officer of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department who gave evidence as a witness, stated that a group of people gathered outside the police department on 05 November 2015 and demanded Elchin Gasimov’s release;
  •  The cross-examination of victim Ibrahim Kazimov, employee of Main Organised Crime Department, was also continued. Kazimov said he had not tortured any of the defendants.

On 14 October 2016 Baku Grave Crimes Court chaired by Judge Alovsat Abbasov continued the hearing on the criminal case of Muslim Union Movement’s Chairman Taleh Bagirzade and other members of the Muslim Union Movement, charged under 21 articles of the Criminal Code including homicide, terrorism and incitement.

The APFP Deputy Chairman Fuad Gahramanli who is not a member of the Movement but yet accused of promoting their cause is charged under Articles 220.2 (making calls for active insubordination to lawful requirements of representatives of authority and for mass disorders, as well as violence against citizens), 281.2 (public appeals directed against the state, committed repeatedly or by a group of people) and 283.2.1 (instigation of national, racial, social or religious hatred and hostility, by using or threatening to use violence) of the Criminal Code respectively.

On 26 November 2015 an armed incident occurred between a group of believers and policemen in Nardaran settlement of Baku, during an operation conducted by the police. According to official reports, the shootout resulted in the death of six, including two police officers. Taleh Bagirzade, the leader of the Muslim Union Movement, and several believers were detained as part of the operation. A criminal case has been launched in relation to the incident by the Prosecutor General’s Office of Azerbaijan Republic.

Fuad Gahramanli, who was not present during the incident, was arrested on 8 December, 2015. His lawyer Yalchin Imanov said that Fuad Gahramanli was arrested due to his Facebook posts and his case was merged with the criminal case of the people arrested over the Nardaran incidents.

Witness testimonies:

Police Sergeant Nasib Asadullayev, officer of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, testified at the court hearing as a witness. “We were at a football event on 05 November 2015. Information was received that a group of people had gathered in front of Sabunchu District Police Department. We immediately went there. It was several minutes past 10 a.m. We invited the rioters to discipline, but they defied. They attacked the Department, and began throwing stones at us. They were about 100 to 150 people. They wanted someone by name Elchin (ed.: Muslim Union Movement Deputy Chairman Elchin Gasimov) to be released,” the witness said.

Witness Anar Ibrahimov, officer of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, took the stand next. “We were at a football event on 05 November 2015. An alarm was given, and we went to Sabunchu District Police Department. We saw a crowd of approximately 100 to 150 people gathered in front of Sabunchu District Police Department and demanding the release of a man by name Elchin (ed.: Muslim Union Movement Deputy Chairman Elchin Gasimov). They were chanting slogans in this connection. Then they started to throw stones. Some police officers were hit by stones. They also threw a stone at me, which hit me in the stomach. I lost my transceiver and baton during the incident, but later the riot police found my transceiver and gave it to me,” Anar Ibrahimov said.

After that, witness Israfil Mustafayev, squad commander of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, testified. He stated that a group of people gathered outside the police department on 05 November 2015 and demanded Elchin Gasimov’s release. He said he had not been injured by the stones thrown during the incident.

Thereafter, Siyavush Mirzazade, officer of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, gave a witness testimony. He said that he had not arrested anyone during the incident of 5 November 2015. However, lawyer Yalchin Imanov spotted a contradiction between the witness’s current testimony and his investigation statement which stated that he had detained one person. The witness said both testimonies were correct, thereby sparking discontent among the lawyers and the defendants. Even the public prosecutor said that both of the testimonies could not be true at the same time, only one of them could. But the witness stuck to his version.

Lawyer Yalchin Imanov asked the witness to be brought to criminal responsibility for perjury.

Valeh Mustafayev, Police Sergeant of the Post Patrol Service unit of Sabunchu District Police Department, also testified at the hearing as a witness. He said a group of people were causing a public disturbance outside Sabunchu District Police Department on 5 November 2015, demanding Elchin Gasimov’s release, and throwing stones at the police officers.

Cross-examination of victim:

Next, the cross-examination of victim Ibrahim Kazimov, employee of Main Organised Crime Department, was resumed. Kazimov replied to the lawyers’ and the defendants’ questions.

He said that he had neutralised defendant Rasim Jabrayilov, but had not inflicted any injury on him. However, lawyer Yalchin Imanov referred to the forensic expert opinion which read that there were multiple signs of injury on Rasim Jabrayilov’s body. Kazimov said he did not know what those injuries had emerged from.

The next hearing is scheduled for October 17, 10.30am.