Journalist Forcibly Brought from Georgia

May 31st, 2017

Journalist Afgan Mukhtarli has been kidnapped in Tbilisi and brought to Baku, as he told his lawyer Nemat Karimli in a phone call. Yesterday evening, Afgan Mukhtarli parted with his friends to go home, but he never made it there. Today he turned out to have been brought to the Investigation Department of Azerbaijan’s State Border Service. The journalist is accused of illegal border crossing (Article 318.1 of the Criminal Code) and smuggling (Article 206.1).
After a meeting with Afgan Mukhtarli, lawyer Elchin Sadigov said the journalist was detained in Tbilisi yesterday and a bag was put over his head. After telling the men who detained him that his heart hurt and he could not breathe, they covered his head with a shirt, tied it up with adhesive tape and beat him. They drove him somewhere for 2 hours, where he was transferred to a car with several Azerbaijanis inside. They put EUR 10,000 into his pocket. He has wounds on various parts of his face and suspects a broken rib. The lawyer was told that tomorrow Afgan Mukhtarli would be brought before the court to be ordered detained on remand.