PRESIDENTIAL APPEAL FOR IMPRISONED HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDER

May 18th, 2011
Today, Ogtay Isgandarov, brother of imprisoned human rights defender Vidadi Isgandarov held a press conference at IRFS press center. He alleged that Vidadi’s arrest is politically motivated and is based on trumped up charges.

“Vidadi`s arrest aims to restrict his professional human rights defense and political activity. Although he was a member of the Public Chamber opposition party group, he was monitoring the rally held by the Chamber. He also flagged up official corruption,” said Ogtay Isgandarov. He added that on May 15th, they sent a letter to the president Ilham Aliyev, with 500 signatures.
“We asked President to give his attention to this issue. I have also met with representatives of several embassies. They said that this issue is very much on their radar”.
BACKGROUND
Vidadi Isgandarov used to work at the prosecutor’s offices, before he was fired for his criticism of the leadership, at which point he began to operate as a human rights defender. He unveiled election fraud in Goychay region, where he ran for parliament in the 2010 parliamentary elections.  Isgandarov defended the rights of citizens cheated by GEN LLC, relatives of Elvin Asgarov, who was beaten to death by police, and the drivers who were beaten by the employees of Ministry of Transport. Isgandarov was detained during the monitoring of the April 2nd opposition rally and sentenced to 8 days in jail. On April 17, at another opposition rally, he was detained again and sentenced to 15 days in jail. Isgandarov suffers from diabetes.