Khatai court judge put Bakhtiyar Hajiyev in a glass cage and did not release him under house arrest

On August 19, the Khatai District Court of Baku, chaired by Judge Parviz Zamanli, rejected a request to replace arrest with house arrest for human rights activist Bakhtiyar Hajiyev. This was reported to Turan by lawyer Fakhreddin Mehdiyev, adding that an appeal would be filed against this decision.

“Bakhtiyar Hajiev himself filed a petition. At the trial, he asked to be taken out of the glass cage and put next to his lawyers. However, the judge did not satisfy this request. After that, Bakhtiyar Hajiyev and we, the lawyers, refused to speak, because at previous court hearings Bakhtiyar was sitting next to with their defenders.

After that, the public prosecutor and the investigator asked the judge reject the request for transfer to house arrest, which was done,” Mehdiyev said.

*Bakhtiyar Hajiyev was arrested on December 9, 2022 on charges of hooliganism and contempt of court.

On December 15, Hajiyev went on a hunger strike demanding his release. He ended his hunger strike on December 28 after calls from the public and family members. On January 9, the Baku Court of Appeal denied to release Hajiyev and he renewed the hunger strike, which he stopped on the 51st day.

On June 16 of this year, the investigating authority brought new charges against Bakhtiyar Hajiyev under Articles 192 (Illegal business), 193 (False business), 320.1 (falsification of documents), 320.2 (forgery) and 206.1 (Smuggling).

“The new accusations are charges against NGOs. Allegedly, Bakhtiyar Hajiyev received grants and did not spend them as intended.

Bakhtiyar does not accept the charges, saying that the charges are related to his public and human rights activities,” the lawyer said.

The court extended Hajiyev’s arrest several times. The last time, on July 22, the Khatai District Court extended his arrest until October 8.

The US State Department, the US Helsinki Commission, the European Union, the Council of Europe and international NGOs, the public circles of Azerbaijan have repeatedly demanded the release of Bakhtiyar Hajiyev from prison.

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