SAKIT ZAHIDOV HUNGER-STRIKING SINCE 2 FEB.

February 4th, 2008
To clarify reports being circulated about "Azadlig" Newspaper satiric/journalist Sakit Zahidov's hunger-strike, today the Institute for Reporter's Freedom and Safety has sent an appeal to the Public Committee of the Ministry of Justice.

In the appeal IRFS requests the committee to visit Zahidov in the near future, to inquire about his health and to inform the public about what they learn. IRFS also sent an inquiry to the head of Penitentiary System Nazim Alakbarov, asking if Zahidov is conducting hunger-strike, if so when did the imprisoned journalist start the hunger-strike, and what are the journalist's demands.
This evening IRFS also contacted the Penitentiary System. A representative there told IRFS that Sakit Zahidov previously presented a document to Prison #14 Chief Ershad Hasanov regarding about his intention to start a hunger-strike.
Upon hearing this, IRFS also contact Hasanov. Hasanov said, "Sakit Zahidov has been hunger-striking since 2 February. This or evening or tomorrow morning he will stop his hunger-strike. He is stopping the hunger-strike, because we have agreed to transfer him to the Chief Medical Facility of the Justice Ministry's Penitentiary System."