APPEAL OF THE TALYSH NATIONAL MOVEMENT
TO THE DEPUTIES OF THE PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY OF THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE
AND INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY
Since February 28, 2019, Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov), a renowned Talysh scholar and journalist, one of the leaders of the Talysh National Movement, has been kept in the detention center of the State Security Service of Azerbaijan Republic. Before, he had been illegally extradited to Azerbaijan from the Russian Federation after a six-month arrest.
Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov) is a prisoner of conscience, persecuted by the Azerbaijani authorities for his political views, as well as for his more than twenty-five years of academic and journalistic activity.
The State Security Service Detention Center remains the most closed institution in the country. Back in 2003, the UN Committee against Torture, in its Final Report, expressed concern about the functioning of this detention center, and found it incorrect that, the preliminary investigation and the detention center were under the authority of the Ministry of National Security (currently the State Security Service) and even located in the same building. The UN Committee against Torture recommended (paragraph 7d of the 2003 Final Report) to either transfer the pre-trial detention center to the Ministry of Justice or close it altogether.
The Council of Europe Committee on the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) notes in its reports that torture and other forms of ill-treatment are systematic in Azerbaijan Republic.
In this regard, we express high concern for the life and health of Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov), who severely criticized the Azerbaijani authorities for violating the rights of the Talysh people − the indigenous population of the country, as well as for corruption and the authoritarian style of government of the current President Ilham Aliyev. There is a serious deterioration in Fakhraddin Aboszoda’s state of health − he lost consciousness several times in jail. Representatives of the pre-trial detention center do not provide official information regarding his state of health.
In 2009, a colleague of Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov), Novruzali Mammadov, one of the most famous researchers of the Talysh language, died in an Azerbaijani prison. Both his sons died at liberty, their property was confiscated, his spouse was forced to leave the country. Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov) is now the only researcher of the Talysh language in Azerbaijan, he is the author of the largest Talysh dictionaries.
Investigators, in every possible way, limit any connection of F. Aboszoda (Abbasov) with the outside world, exert psychological pressure on him, misinform him about the events happening around his case. His lawyers are also under serious pressure. One of his lawyers (E. Osmanov) was forced to refuse to provide his services in fear for his safety. Apparently, the investigation exerts pressure on the new lawyer as well, in order to prevent him to appeal to the European Court of Human Rights. F. Aboszoda (Abbasov) himself expressed such a desire in his statement of 04.04.2019, to the Court of Appeal of Baku. The appeal to the ECHR was prepared right after the meeting of the Court of Appeal of Baku. However, so far, it has not been sent to the appropriate authority. In recent months, the lawyer visited Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov) no more than three times.
The investigation denies meetings, phone calls and even transfers to any person who come into contracts with the lawyers of Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov).
Azerbaijani human rights activists, having pulled away from this case, demonstrate, by their complete silence, amazing coherence with the actions of the Azerbaijani authorities.
The persecution of Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov) threatens his life, and does not only violate his rights to freedom of speech and thought, but also the rights of the entire Talysh people, because it is another act of intimidation of the Talyshes.
We demand the immediate release of the Talysh scholar and journalist Fakhraddin Aboszoda (Abbasov) and the end to his illegal prosecution!
Freedom to Fakhraddin Aboszoda!
Freedom to the Talysh people!
Freedom to Talyshistan!
President of the Talysh-Mughan Autonomous Republic,
Leader of the Talysh National Movement,
The Hague, Kingdom of the Netherlands,