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CE Commissioner to Azerbaijan: “We are not idiots!”

Nils Muižnieks, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights. Photo by the Council of Europe

Azerbaijani authorities are obliged to release political prisoners, including human rights defenders, journalists, bloggers, and other activists, Nils Muižnieks, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, told Azerbaijani reporters.

The European Commissioner said the judiciary in Azerbaijan arrests and convicts people not on the basis of the law, but performing a political put-up job.

“Since last August, repression in Azerbaijan began to gain momentum and took a large-scale nature. And there is no other country of the Council of Europe, where all my partners were in prison,” Muižnieks said.

In response to the questions of journalists whether the Council of Europe takes into account the opinion of the Azerbaijani government or it does not care about it, Muižnieks said he disagrees with this view. “Listen, there are two options here: either the Council of Europe is composed of idiots who just cooperate with separatists, drug addicts, suicides and revolutionaries, or there is something very bad with the legal system of Azerbaijan. I can assure you - we are not idiots!" the Commissioner said.

At the request of Turan correspondent, the Commissioner addressed the fate of Khadija Ismaylova, Rasul Jafarov and other political prisoners: “'They must release Khadija, Rasul, Hilal and other human rights defenders, journalists and all those who are unjustly in prison.”

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