Fourth trial against leader of Citizens and Development party begins

On October 27, a preparatory hearing on the criminal case against the imprisoned chairman of the Citizenship and Development Party, Ali Aliyev, will begin in the Sabunchi District Court of Baku, chaired by Judge Anar Rzayev, the lawyer Shahla Humbatova said. In September of this year, the fourth criminal case was initiated against Ali Aliyev; this time on charges of beating a cellmate. Ali Aliyev denied the accusation, calling it fabricated and politically motivated. Ali Aliyev’s supporters believe that they want to isolate him for a long time because of his harsh criticism of the government.

On October 26, lawyer Shahla Humbatova was not allowed into the pre-trial detention center to meet with Ali Aliyev.

*On January 13 this year, Ali Aliyev was sentenced to 5 months in prison on charges of libel (Article 147.1 of the Criminal Code) based on a complaint from an officer of the State Border Service (SBS) Emil Jafarov.

On April 15, the court extended the sentence by one more month, also upholding the complaint against Aliyev by another officer of the State Border Service, Ramin Adilov.

The reason for the lawsuits was the statement by Ali Aliyev in the press that the said officers could not survive the crash of the MI-17 State Fire Service helicopter on November 30, 2021 and that the helicopter could have been shot down by the Russian side. In the crash of the State Border Service helicopter in November last year, 14 officers of this department were killed, and two survived.

Ali Aliyev rejected both verdicts, calling his arrest “a political order from the country’s leadership.”

On June 23, the Yasamal court increased Aliyev’s sentence to 1 year in prison, satisfying the complaint of Ramiz Geyushev, a former functionary of the ruling New Azerbaijan Party. The latter sued Ali Aliyev after he, in a video interview with Boomerang TV in September 2021, called him a “hare”, “fraer” and “masturbator”.

The reason for this was the footage that appeared on the Internet in September 2021, in which Geyushev is watching a porn video. The journalist who distributed these footage was arrested, and Geyushev was expelled from the party. Human rights activists recognized Aliyev as a political prisoner.

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