Journalist’s case to be heard on the merits

March 9th, 2014

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On March 7, Baku Court on Grave Crimes, held another hearing on the case of journalist Parviz Hashimli and Tavakkul Gurbanov, who is charged as accomplice in what the National Security Agency, or MTN, claims to be “smuggling” by “organized group”.
Hashimli once again informed the court about poor detention conditions in MTN isolation ward.
He noted that on March 6th he was not given a one-hour walk and was not allowed to meet his family or talk to them on the phone.
The journalist asked the judge to send a letter to the isolation ward for ensuring his rights. But the judge said that this issue falls within the competence of the officials of the MTN isolator and he could not interfere.
Hashimli further told the court that his appeals sent to various state bodies from the isolator remain unanswered, but the judge replied that this is irrelevant to the criminal case, which is judged within indictment.
Hearing of the case on the merits is scheduled for March 11, at 10:00am.
Background: Bizim Yol newspaper journalist and moderator.az editor-in-chief Parviz Hashimli was detained on September 17, by employees of the Ministry of National Security, or MTN. On September 18, the journalist was handed down a two-month pretrial detention sentence by the Sabail District Court under two articles of the Azerbaijani Criminal Code: Article 206.3.2 (smuggling of firearms on preliminary arrangement by an organized group) and 228.2.1 (illegal purchase, transfer, selling, storage, transportation and carrying of firearms, their accessories, supplies and explosives by an organized group). His detention term was extended for another three months on November 7.