June 23rd, 2008

Yesterday (22 June) “Azadlig” Newspaper Editor-in-chief Ganimat Zahid’s family visited him in the Prison #17.

Zahid’s wife Ayanda Mursaliyeva told the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety that G. Zahid doesn’t have any complaints about the prison conditions or the attitudes of prison employees towards him.

Mursaliyeva said she doesn’t have any news about the fate of the manuscripts of a book that G. Zahid started writing while he was in Bayil Prison. “We received a reply to the appeal that defense lawyer Rashid Hajili addressed to the Chief of Bayil Prison. Now we are waiting for a reply to the letter he sent to the Ministry of Justice Penitentiary Service,” she said.

Recall that Bayil Prison Head Misir Aliyev took the handwritten several-hundred page long manuscript from Zahid, claiming he wanted to read it. The book is about the modern history of Azerbaijan. Later Aliyev refused to return the manuscript, claiming that the book contains writings against Heydar and Ilham Aliyev. M. Aliyev also said that he gave the manuscripts to the Chief Department of Court Decisions Services of the Justice Ministry. In a response to a letter sent to M.Aliyev by R.Hajili, it was noted that “Ganimat Zahid’s manuscripts have already been given to the leadership of Penitentiary Service. For this matter you need to appeal to the Justice Ministry’s Penitentiary Service.”