Lawyer warns of deteriorating health of Leyla Yunus in jail



The medical condition of imprisoned human rights defender Leyla Yunus remains serious, reported her lawyer, Elchin Sadigov, on November 24.


According to the lawyer, Yunus suffers from digestive problems, which are exacerbated by her diabetes and liver cirrhosis.


Sadigov says that they have not received a response to their request to transfer Leyla Yunus to the medical facility of the Baku Detention Facility, where she is currently being held.


He added that after examining Leyla Yunus on October 30, the doctor deemed her condition serious, and even warned that she was at risk of death.


“We will file a motion for her release at the next court hearing on December 7 in the Court of Appeal,” said Sadigov.


Leyla Yunus’s husband Arif was recently released from prison (subject to house arrest orders), and his treatment is continuing at home under medical supervision.


Background: Leyla and Arif Yunus were arrested in late July and early August 2014. Leyla Yunus was charged under articles 178.3.2 (large scale fraud), 192.2.2 (illegal entrepreneurship), 213.2.2 (tax evasion), 274 (treason), 320.1 and 320.2 (falsification of documents) of the Criminal Code. Arif Yunus was charged under articles 178.3.2 (large scale fraud) and 274 (treason).

The prosecuting authority subsequently ruled to investigate the treason charges in separate proceedings.


Leyla and Arif Yunus were sentenced to 8.5 and 7 years in jail respectively by the decision of Baku Grave Crimes Court on August 13, 2015.


On November 12, Arif Yunus was released on recognizance on medical grounds.

Amnesty International recognized both Leyla and Arif Yunus as prisoners of conscience.

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