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Parliamentary questions
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16 April 2019
Question for written answer E-001848-19
to the Commission (Vice-President/High Representative)
Rule 130
Marietje Schaake (ALDE)

 Subject:  VP/HR — Afgan Mukhtarli in Azerbaijan
 Answer in writing 

On 29 May 2017, Afgan Mukhtarli, an Azeri journalist, was abducted blocks from his home in Tbilisi, Georgia by unidentified men. He was then forcibly taken to an Azerbaijani border checkpoint where he was detained for several hours before being transported to Baku. In January 2018, he was sentenced to six years in prison following groundless charges that represent a clear attempt to silence him for his critical reporting. In September 2018, the Supreme Court of Azerbaijan upheld the verdict.

President Aliyev pardoned 51 political prisoners in April of this year, but Mukhtarli remains imprisoned. According to recent reports, his health is deteriorating and he has not received proper medical treatment, which is urgently needed.

Will the VP/HR publicly condemn the continued detention of Afgan Mukhtarli, and will she discuss the urgent need for medical care and stress the need for his immediate and unconditional release with the Azeri authorities as soon as possible?

What action is the European External Action Service (EEAS) taking in response to Parliament’s call in its resolution from January 2019 to ensure that the release of political prisoners in Azerbaijan remains a priority in EU-Azerbaijan bilateral relations, and that the EU should redouble its efforts to support the release of the remaining political prisoners following the recent release of more than 50 individuals?

Last updated: 6 May 2019Legal notice