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Cases of torture and inhumane treatments in Azerbaijani prisons

Motion for a resolution | Doc. 15331 | 25 June 2021

Mr Roberto RAMPI, Italy, SOC ; Ms María Luisa BUSTINDUY, Spain, SOC ; Ms Laura CASTEL, Spain, NR ; Mr Damien COTTIER, Switzerland, ALDE ; Mr Constantinos EFSTATHIOU, Cyprus, SOC ; Mr Olivier FRANÇAIS, Switzerland, ALDE ; Mr Pierre-Alain FRIDEZ, Switzerland, SOC ; Mr Gusty GRAAS, Luxembourg, ALDE ; Ms Marta GRANDE, Italy, NR ; Mr Jean-Pierre GRIN, Switzerland, ALDE ; Mr Ólafur Þór GUNNARSSON, Iceland, UEL ; Ms Inka HOPSU, Finland, SOC ; Mr Andrej HUNKO, Germany, UEL ; Mr Momodou Malcolm JALLOW, Sweden, UEL ; Ms Maria JUFEREVA-SKURATOVSKI, Estonia, ALDE ; Mr George KATROUGALOS, Greece, UEL ; Mr Tiny KOX, Netherlands, UEL ; Ms Carmen LEYTE, Spain, EPP/CD ; Ms Josée LORSCHÉ, Luxembourg, SOC ; Mr Hişyar ÖZSOY, Turkey, UEL ; Mr Bob van PAREREN, Netherlands, EC/DA ; Mr Gianluca PERILLI, Italy, NR ; Mr Lars Aslan RASMUSSEN, Denmark, SOC ; Mr Nicos TORNARITIS, Cyprus, EPP/CD

The Parliamentary Assembly is concerned with the increasing number of reports of torture and inhumane treatments in Azerbaijan.

As an example, in 2017, more than 1 000 military personnel and civilians alike from the border regions of Azerbaijan were detained on suspicion of espionage and treason. Criminal cases were opened against more than 200 people, many of whom were subjected to torture and inhumane treatments. From 1 May to 17 May 2017, eleven individuals died as a result of torture.

Twenty-five people were convicted for treason, based on information acquired during the interrogations under torture, and sentenced to prison for terms varying from seven years to twenty years. Out of the eleven people killed under torture, five were acquitted of their charges postmortem.

The Azerbaijani authorities recognised as victims only 102 people out of the 135 who alleged being subjected to torture and inhumane treatments. However, none were ever granted reparations for the damages they suffered. Furthermore, no one was ever convicted for inflicting torture.

This issue also concerns independent journalists, human rights activists, members of the political opposition and dissidents, who are persecuted and imprisoned by the Azerbaijani authorities, and are often subjected to torture and degrading treatments.

The Assembly should appoint a rapporteur to look into the cases of torture and inhumane treatment and evaluate Azerbaijan’s compliance with articles 2 (right to life), 3 (prohibition of torture), 6 (right to a fair trial) and 13 (right to an effective remedy).

The Assembly should urge the Azerbaijani authorities to uphold the European Convention on Human Rights and cease all torture, inhumane and degrading treatments of prisoners.