August 5th, 2008
Today (5 August) defense lawyer Alaif Hasanov wasn’t permitted to visit imprisoned “Azadlig” Newspaper employee, satiric/journalist Sakit Zahidov in Prison #14.

Hasanov told this to the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety.
According to A. Hasanov, without showing any evidence or giving any explanation, he wasn’t permitted to see Zahidov. “I went to Prison #14 where Sakit Zahidov is serving his prison term. To meet Sakit, I appealed to the Justice Ministry’s Penitentiary Service earlier, and I received permission. After waiting for two hours in the entrance of the Prison, a chief deputy came and told me to wait. Then I contacted Head of the Penitentiary Service Public Relations Department Mehman Sadigov. Although he promised to resolve the problem, I had to return back without meeting Sakit after waiting for two and a half hours,” said Hasanov.
According to A. Hasanov, in the permission document given to him by the Penitentiary Service it was noted that one copy had been sent to the chief of the prison.
Note that the prison where Sakit Zahidov is held is situated in Gizildash village, 45 km outside of Baku.
IRFS contacted the Penitentiary Service Public Relations Department. An employee from the department told IRFS that this issue has already been solved and the lawyer can meet Sakit “whenever he likes.”