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October 20
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Members of the Solidarity for Justice Committee called on the authorities to solve the problem of political prisoners, to ease tensions in society and to eliminate criticism of the international community. This was announced today at a meeting of the committee, contact.az reported.

"We are worried about the fate of all political prisoners, but the fate of the youth activist Ilkin Rustamzadeh, who has been imprisoned for 6 years, is particularly worrying," the committee said in a statement.

The authors of the statement also call for the release of the leader of the REAL Party Ilgar Mammadov on justifiable grounds.

"Only by this step the authorities can wash away the shame associated with the six-year unfounded and illegal content of Mamedov in prison, which was confirmed by two decisions of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR)."

The authors of the document call for the release of Ali Insanov, ex-minister of health, who received another 7 years after his 11-year imprisonment, as well as other political prisoners: Fikret Faramazoglu, Rashad Ramazanov, Mammad Ibrahim, Asif Yusifli, and others.

The Committee criticized the refusal to release the convicted blogger Mehman Huseynov to say farewell to his dying mother. "The society would welcome the pardoning of Mehman Huseynov based on the principles of humanism," the statement said.

The Committee called on the authorities to investigate the unjustified arrests a year ago of a group of officers on charges of treason and espionage and who were tortured to death.

The Committee also condemned the blocking of a number of websites that covered the Gyanja events, and the harassment of journalists Mustafa Hajibeyli and Parviz Hashimli.

Now begins a new wave against the websites. Yesterday, on the proposal of the Ministry of Communications, the website az24saat.org.az was blocked. Claims are also filed against a number of websites. These unintelligible steps disgrace the country's image in the international arena.

It is necessary to identify officials who initiate these actions and punish them.

The limits of freedom of the press in Azerbaijan should be expanded and it is necessary to get rid of the control of this sphere by certain officials, the statement said.

The Solidarity for Justice Committee includes well-known civil society activists and journalists - Novella Jafaroglu, Arzu Abdullayeva, Sayida Gojamanli, Saadat Bananyarli, Mehman Aliyev, Avaz Zeynalli, Hilal Mammadov, Elshan Hasanov, Mirvari Gahramanli, Shahla Ismayil, Elchin Mammad, Aytekin Imranova.

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