Samir Ashurov goes on hunger strike

Activist Samir Ashurov, detained on 19 April, denies the criminal charges brought against him. His lawyer Elchin Sadigov visited Ashurov today in Nizami district police headquarters in Baku.

The activist told the lawyer that on April 19 he received a passport and planned to go abroad, but on the same day a provocation was committed against him. Thus, in the evening of April 19, when Ashurov was returning home near the “Neftchilar” metro station, he was attacked by an unknown man. (As it turned out later, it was Elshan Nabiev, who was later found to be a victim.)

The assailant knocked Ashurov down, but he managed to break free and call for help. Police officers immediately appeared and detained him, placing a knife in his right jacket pocket. Ashurov threw the knife away, but the police officers put the knife back in his pocket and brought him to the 24th Police Station.  There Ashurov was subjected to a beating and later beaten again at Nizami police station.

His lawyer saw signs of beatings and bruises on the activist’s left temple and chest.

Ashurov was charged under Article 126.2.4 of the Criminal Code (Intentional infliction of grievous harm to health from hooliganism), which provides for a penalty of 6 to 11 years in prison.

Ashurov denies the charges and has been on hunger strike to demand an end to the prosecution, his lawyer said. Ashurov is due in court today for a preventive measure of arrest.

Ashurov was expelled from Germany on 29 March and on arrival claimed threats to arrest him.

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