Army, a tool for punishment?!

On November 17th, a John F.Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University graduate, youth activist and a former candidate in the parliamentary elections held in Azerbaijan on  November 7th, 2010, Bakhtiyar Hajiyev was detained on the border of Azerbaijan and Georgia. Leaving for Georgia to continue his education at the Georgian State University, Hajiyev was accused of evading military service. Being released a day after, Hajiyev claimed he was refused any food during the 24 hours of his detention and was intimidated during the investigation while being held at the military commissariat where representatives of police and executive power of Ganja (his home city) were also present.

But this was not the end of the story. On January 25th, after 5 hour-long interrogation Hajiyev was released with one condition- he would sign a document restricting him from leaving Ganja. In his response however, Hajiyev referred to his constitutional right to be considered for an alternative service. Currently, Azerbaijani legislation does not contain a law allowing for an alternative service, but the draft law is being considered by the parliament.

On January 28th Hajiyev posted the following status update on his Facebook page claiming:

“There are some people in Azerbaijan taking advantage of the alternative service. I sent the decisions made on the case of these people by several regional prosecutors to the office of the General Prosecutor”

A day later, his Twitter account contained the following feed:

“My government opened a criminal case against me for demanding my constitutional right”

“in 4 days from now, Azerbaijani government may send me to jail for demanding alternative service(not military) which is my constitutional right”

Again, On January 25th  2011,  the Government opened a criminal case against Hajiyev for demanding his constitutional right- alternative service (not military), which is allowed by the article 76.2 of the Constitution of the Republic of Azerbaijan. Since that moment, Hajiyev had to  report to local police in Ganja every day.

But on March 04th, after being questioned about his antigovernment propaganda on Internet   he was detained for a month, reports Radio Liberty Azerbaijan service. Hajiyev is one of the seven moderators of “11 March is Great People’s Day in Azerbaijan”-Facebook campaign calling for a day of  protest against the government.

In his letter sent from pre-detention centre, Hajiyev claims that he is beaten, tortured, insulted and threatened to be raped by police. He began death hunger strike and wants to meet with the US Ambassador to Azerbaijan.

Source: @ParvanaPersiani

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3 Cavab to “Army, a tool for punishment?!”

  1. Azerbaijan: Facebook activism or military service? · Global Voices Says:

    […] of seven moderators for a Facebook group calling for Egypt-style protests in Azerbaijan, the blog notes that the charge of avoiding military service is being used against him as the 11 March protest…. […]

  2. Azerbaijan: Facebook activism or military service? | Daringsearch Says:

    […] Democracy Now! comments on the case of Bakhtiyar Hajiyev, the Harvard educated activist detained in Azerbaijan last week. As one of seven moderators for a Facebook group calling for Egypt-style protests in Azerbaijan, the blog notes that the charge of avoiding military service is being used against him as the 11 March protest…. […]

  3. Azerbaijan: Facebook activism or military service? Says:

    […] Democracy Now! comments on the case of Bakhtiyar Hajiyev, the Harvard educated activist detained in Azerbaijan last week. As one of seven moderators for a Facebook group calling for Egypt-style protests in the oil-rich former Soviet republic, the blog notes that the charge of avoiding military service is being used against him as the 11 March protest…. […]

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