YENI MUSAVAT NEWSPAPER EMPLOYEE SUBJECTED TO PHYSICAL PRESSURE

February 8th, 2010
Yesterday, 7 February, Yeni Musavat newspaper employee Leyla Ilgar was allegedly subjected to pressure by police.

The Institute for reporters` Freedom and Safety was told this by Leyla Ilgar.
Leyla Ilgar said that yesterday at 1:30 p.m., she witnessed two policemen kicking the counter of a saleswoman and dragging her while she was preparing reportage in the “8-ji kilometr” bazaar in the Nizami District in Baku.
“When police saw that I was taking pictures, he let go off the woman, came to me and demanded the photo-camera,” said Leyla Ilgar. “I told him that I was a journalist and showed him my card. He took my card and smashed it, and demanded for the camera. I put the camera into my pocket. Police stretched out his hand and took photo-camera from my pocket. Then they took me to police car by force and brought me to the police department #24.” Leyla Ilgar added that her right hand was injured when she struggled for the camera. She was not subjected to physical pressure in the police department, but faced mental pressure. She was charged for disturbing a secret operation against narcotic dealer by claiming that the woman in the bazaar is a narcotic dealer.
“Today I found the same woman in the bazaar doing her business,” said Leyla Ilgar who added that she was released after Yeni Musavat newspaper leadership communicated with Nizami District Police Office Chief.
Leyla Ilgar told IRFS that she will appeal to the Nizami District Police Office and the Internal Affairs Minister regarding the harassment used against her.
IRFS contacted the Nizami District Police Department Police Unit #24 regarding this issue. The person on duty who presented himself as Bakhtiyarli said that he did not have any information about this incident. When he was told that we wanted to speak with Department Chief or Deputy Chief, the man on duty said that no information could be given over the telephone.
Yeni Musavat newspaper has been published since 1993 and operates as daily newspaper and has large circulation.