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APA news agency correspondent detained, assaulted by police while covering presidential visit to predecessor's grave

(IRFS/IFEX) - On 10 May 2008 at around 11:00 a.m. (local time), APA Information Agency special reporter Elbrus Seyfullayev was subjected to police pressure while government leaders led by President Ilham Aliyev were visiting the grave of ex-president Heydar Aliyev.

According to an eyewitness who wishes to remain anonymous, the journalist was covering the visit when police interfered. When the journalist objected to this, the police started to beat him and escorted him away from the area while insulting him.

The journalist was taken to police precinct Number 28, held there for 40 minutes and then released.

APA Director Vusala Mahirgizi confirmed to the IRFS that the journalist was taken to the police precinct. However, she would not confirm or deny that Seyfullayev was beaten. "A misunderstanding occurred, and they apologized about this incident," added Mahirgizi. She emphasized that neither the newspaper nor the journalist are going to file a complaint about the incident.

On 10 May the 85th birthday of the deceased former president of Azerbaijan, Heydar Aliyev, the father of the current president, Ilham Aliyev, and "Gul Bayrami" (Flower Holiday) were being widely celebrated in Baku.

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