INSTITUTE FOR REPORTERS’ FREEDOM AND SAFETY STATEMENT

October 7th, 2009

The Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety (IRFS) condemns the decision of the Nasimi District Court against “FANAT.AZ” sports website project head Zahir Azamat and website’s sports writer Natig Mukhtarli to sentence them to corrective labor.

Today, 7 October the Nasimi District court issued a verdict against “FANAT.AZ” sports website project head Zahir Azamat and website’s sports writer Natig Mukhtarli on “Khazar-Lankaran” Football Club President Mais Masimov’s lawsuit under articles 147.2 (accusing someone in grave or especially grave crimes) and 148 (insult) of the Criminal Code. According to the verdict, Natig Mukhtarli was sentenced to one year of corrective labor and Zahir Azamat to six months of corrective labor. The journalists have to pay 20 % of their salaries to Mais Masimov.