World Association of Newspapers and News Publishers


Hilal Mammadov, Azerbaijan - Jailed since June 2012

Hilal Mammadov, Azerbaijan - Jailed since June 2012

Article ID:

17629

Day 8
Country: Azerbaijan
Journalist: Hilal Mammadov
Media: Editor-in-chief of Tolishi-Sado (Voice of Talysh)
Jailed since: 21 June 2012

Suggested Tweets:

#FreethePress calls on @presidentaz to release Hilal Mammadov and all journalists jailed in #Azerbaijan bit.ly/1qn50La

Send this protest letter bit.ly/1sLODKj to @presidentaz and call for the release of Hilal Mammadov#FreethePress


A minority rights defender and editor-in-chief of the Tolishi-Sado (Voice of Talysh) newspaper, Hilal Mammadov was arrested in June 2012 and initially charged with drug possession. A month later he faced more accusations, including spying for Iran, treason, and inciting ethnic hatred. In a court appearance marred by numerous violations of fair trial standards, Mammadov was sentenced on 27 September 2013 to five years in prison in a semi-closed trial at the Baku Grave Crimes Court. 

Share our protest letter http://bit.ly/1sLODKj

Human rights groups inside and outside Azerbaijan, including the independent Baku-based Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety (IRFS) and the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, believe that he is being punished for his journalism and activism for the rights of national minorities.

Mammadov was not the first victim of injustice to come from the country's sole minority Talysh-language newspaper. Hilal Mammadov, a veteran Talysh leader, assumed the role of editor-in-chief after his colleague Novruzali Mammadov (no relation) was arrested in 2008 and died one year later after allegedly being tortured while in prison. Mammadov also created the Committee for the Defence of Novruzali Mammadov after his arrest on charges of espionage for Iran. Now, languishing behind bars himself, his supporters fear Hilal Mammadov could share a similar fate to that of his former colleague.

As Azerbaijan assumes the chairmanship of the Council of Europe in May 2014, it continues to imprison journalists who report on government corruption and human rights abuses. Mammadov is the latest target of the increasingly severe crackdown on those exercising their rights to peaceful freedoms of expression. In recent years, Azerbaijan’s government has imprisoned a record number of bloggers, journalists and human rights defenders. According to CPJ, seven other journalists languish in jail, including editors Avaz Zeynally, Hilal Mammadov, Araz Guliyev, and Nijat Aliyev; media directors Vugar Gonagov and Zaur Guliyev; and journalists Fuad Huseynov, Faramaz Novruzoglu (Allahverdiyev), and Tofiq Yaqublu.


Suggested Tweets:

#FreethePress calls on @presidentaz to release Hilal Mammadov and all journalists jailed in #Azerbaijan bit.ly/1qn50La

Send this protest letter bit.ly/1sLODKj to @presidentaz and call for the release of Hilal Mammadov #FreethePress


Resources:


Attachments

Author

wm_WanIfra

Date

2014-04-11 10:40

Contact information

Related nodes

Author

Andrew Heslop's picture

Andrew Heslop

Date

2014-04-03 20:08