September 23, 2019
Imprisoned journalist Afgan Mukhtarli has gone on hunger strike in Azerbaijan and stopped taking his medication in protest against his the ‘mistreatment’ of his lawyer at the hands of prison officials.
Mukhtarli, who is serving six years in prison on charges rights groups insist are trumped-up, began his hunger strike on Sunday in protest against the alleged mistreatment of his lawyer, Nemat Karimli, by the deputy chief of the prison.
According to his wife, Mukhtarli has type 2 diabetes and has refused to take his medication, increasing the risk of falling into a diabetic coma.
The news was spread on Facebook by social activist Samad Asadli, who also shared a statement from Mukhtarli.
‘I started my hunger strike to protest the arbitrariness and violence committed towards my lawyer on 20 September. The deputy chief [of the prison] Emin Eminaliyev is characterised by his cruelty towards political prisoners. Before that, he used violence against political prisoner Mammad Ibrahim. He is ruthless and cruel towards prisoners’, the statement read.
‘The complaints against him are not being investigated by the Prosecutor’s Office. I ask [President of Azerbaijan] Ilham Aliyev to objectively investigate what has happened’, he wrote.
‘Emin Eminaliyev and other [prison] officials using violence should be punished. The actions against lawyers are aimed at violating my rights, earlier, Nemet Karimli was suspended from legal services for one year. The present attacks took place after a meeting with European MPs Sunna Thorhildur and D Myatovich’, the statement concluded.