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Independent journalist Rauf Mirkadyrov gets six-year jail term in Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev speaks at a news conference in Tbilisi, Georgia, 6 May 2014
Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev speaks at a news conference in Tbilisi, Georgia, 6 May 2014

AP Photo/Shakh Aivazov

This statement was originally published on rsf.org on 30 December 2015.

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the “disgraceful” sentence of six years in prison that a Baku court passed on independent journalist Rauf Mirkadyrov on 28 December.

“As we have said time and again, the authorities brought these absurd spying charges against [Rauf Mirkadyrov] solely in order to silence this well-known journalist,” said Johann Bihr, the head of RSF's Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk.

“This disgraceful sentence concludes the latest of the frequent farcical trials to which independent journalists have been subjected in Azerbaijan. We reiterate our call for Mirkadyrov's immediate release.”

Based in Turkey, Mirkadyrov was expelled back to his country of origin in April 2014 and was immediately jailed. His trial on charges of high treason and spying began in the middle of last month.

His lawyer, Fwad Agayev, has said Mirkadyrov will appeal against his conviction.

Read RSF's previous statement on Rauf Mirkadyrov (22.12.2015).

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