About Civil.ge
Eng | Geo | Rus
Last updated: 14:06 - 18 Mar.'18
Reporters Without Borders on Azerbaijani Journalistís Case
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 30 Aug.'17 / 17:57

The Reporters Without Borders (RSF), Paris-based rights watchdog group, released a statement on August 29, three months after the disappearance and subsequent detention of Tbilisi-based Azerbaijani journalist Afgan Mukhtarli, reiterating its condemnation of “Azerbaijan’s persecution of independent journalists like Mukhtarli, who was living in exile in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi, when kidnapped on 29 May.”

“Afgan Mukhtarli’s detention is a disgrace for both Azerbaijan and Georgia,” said Johann Bihr, the head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk. “Not only is no one able to explain how it began, but now it is being extended in defiance of the most elementary humanitarian principles."

“We again appeal to the Azerbaijani authorities to free this journalist at once and to drop the trumped-up charges brought against him. And the Georgian authorities must shed all possible light on how he came to be abducted.”

The ongoing investigation in Georgia into Mukhtarli’s case, the organization also said, “has drawn a blank although several members of the Georgian security services were fired.” “Surveillance camera recordings near the scene of the abduction were mysteriously tampered with,” reads the statement.

Azerbaijani journalist Afgan Mukhtarli went missing from Tbilisi on May 29. A day later he appeared in a detention facility in Baku after being arrested on charges of illegal border crossing, smuggling money and police disobedience.

Mukhtarli’s wife Leyla Mustafayeva and his friends claim that the investigative journalist known for reporting on the corruption of Azerbaijani authorities was abducted by Georgian law enforcers.

The investigation has been launched by the Ministry of Internal Affairs under Article 143 of the Criminal Code on unlawful imprisonment. 

Despite multiple demands, the Georgian government has yet to uncover the facts identified in the course of the investigation. The Georgian Interior Ministry and the prosecutor’s office claim that they still have not obtained Mukhtarli’s testimony and are waiting for the Azerbaijani government’s permit in this respect.  

The President of Georgia, opposition parties, journalists, civil society organizations and international organizations also commented on the journalist’s disappearance and subsequent arrest in Azerbaijan, slamming the Government of Georgia for its handling of the investigation.

On June 15, the European Parliament adopted a resolution on Mukhtarli’s case, condemning “the prosecution of Afgan Mukhtarli following bogus charges” and calling “on the Azerbaijani authorities to immediately and unconditionally drop all charges against and release Afgan Mukhtarli.” The resolution also urges the Georgian authorities to ensure “a prompt, thorough, transparent and effective investigation into Afgan Mukhtarli’s forced disappearance in Georgia and illegal transfer to Azerbaijan.”

On June 27, President Giorgi Margvelashvili met with Afgan Mukhtarli’s wife, Leyla Mustafayeva, to get acquainted with recent developments on the matter, and promised to conduct constant monitoring over the case.

Latest News
18 Mar.'18 14:06
U.S. Navy Ship Makes Port Call in Batumi
The vessel will stay in Georgia until March 20.
17 Mar.'18 12:39
UK Ambassador to Georgia on Salisbury Incident
Justin McKenzie Smith on the British response to the Novichok nerve agent use in Salisbury.
16 Mar.'18 16:40
Majority, Opposition Lawmakers Agree on Russia Resolution
The Parliament of Georgia is to adopt the joint resolution next week.
16 Mar.'18 15:42
Azerbaijani, Georgian, Iranian, Turkish FMs Pledge Closer Ties
The quadrilateral format will strengthen regional cooperation, the Georgian Foreign Minister says.
16 Mar.'18 11:34
Georgian MFA: Crimea Annexation ĎDisregardsí International Law
The Foreign Ministry issued a statement regarding the four-year anniversary of Crimea annexation.
16 Mar.'18 11:30
SG Jens Stoltenberg on Georgia-NATO Relations
NATO Secretary General says he is impressed by reforms, readiness to engage in a dialogue with Russia.
15 Mar.'18 20:33
Opposition Parties Press Govt on Moscow Appeal
Twelve parliamentary and non-parliamentary opposition parties voice their concerns over PM’s dialogue offer. 
15 Mar.'18 17:04
Georgia, Sweden to Sign Convict Repatriation Deal
The interstate agreement will reportedly be concluded in two months time.
15 Mar.'18 01:16
Religious Leaders Concerned over Alleged Desecration of Catholic Symbols in Vale
Public Defender Nino Lomjaria called for a prompt and an effective investigation into the matter.
14 Mar.'18 19:37
Georgian President Visits Washington DC, Meets Lawmakers, Think Tank Community
Giorgi Margvelashvili met with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, and a number of other U.S. legislators.

About Civil Georgia
Civil.Ge © 2001-2018, Daily News Online
Registered office: 2 Dolidze Str, 4-th Floor.