SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS DECISIONS ISSUED AGAINST CHIEF EDITOR

April 24th, 2009
Today, 24 April, in the Supreme Court, under the chairmanship of Judge Aslan Kalbaliyev, a hearing took place on the cassation complaint against the decision of the Appellate court issued to uphold the decision of the Yasamal District Court on the lawsuit of citizen Eldar Mammadaliyev to defend his honor and dignity against “Tehgigat” Newspaper Editor-in-Chief Yagub Magrur.

Owner Eldar Mammadaliyev appealed to the Yasamal District Court claiming that his honor and dignity were damaged in the article “Black actions of black bondmen in Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan” published in “Tehgigat” Newspaper on 27 December 2007. In his lawsuit, E.Mammadov demanded that “Tehgigat” Newspaper editor-in-chief Yagub Magrur publish a refutation and pay 10000 AZN in compensation. The case was considered in the Yasamal District Court under the chairmanship of Judge Khagani Tagiyev and a decision was issued to partially fulfill the lawsuit – “Tehgigat” Newspaper Editor-in-Chief Yagub Magrur had to publish a refutation and pay 200 AZN in compensation.

Y. Magrur filed an appeal against the decision of the Yasamal District Court. The Appellate Court Judge upheld the decision of the Yasamal District Court. The editor-in-chief filed a cassation complaint against the decision of the Baku Appellate Court.
Defendant Y.Magrur, his defense lawyers Elchin Sadigov, Shaig Huseynov and his authoritative representative Anar Bayramov and plaintiff Eldar Mammadaliyev participated in today’s hearing.
Lawyer S. Huseynov spoke first and said that the first instance court did not adopt an objective decision on the case and E. Mammadaliyev’s filing of the lawsuit four months after the article was published was against law.

Lawyer E.Sadigov asked the judge to fulfill the cassation complaint on the basis of the values of freedom of speech envisaged in Article 10 of the European Convention of Human Rights.
Defendant, “Tehgigat” Newspaper Editor-in-Chief Y. Magrur, put forth a motion demanding that E. Mammadaliyev submit a certificate to the court showing what kind of moral damage he suffered and an inquiry be sent to the Internal Ministry regarding Mammadaliyev’s imprisonment in Turkmenistan Republic.
In conclusion, Judge A. Kalbaliyev issued a decision to uphold the previous decisions adopted against “Tehgigat” Newspaper.
“Tehgigat” Newspaper Editor-in-chief Y.Magrur told the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety that he will appeal to the European Court of Human Rights in connection with this issue.