Binaqadi District Court Issued Guilty Verdict of Hikmat Aliyev
The Analysis of violation of law during Hikmat Aliyev’s judicial proceedings
The Binagadi District Court, Baku
Criminal case № 3 (001)-832/
2018 March 08, 2018
Judge: Vugar Mammadov
The Representative of Prosecutor’s Office of Binagadi District: Mobil Shafiyev
The Representative of the 6th station of the Police Department of Binagadi District: Vusal Novruzov
The person against whom the administrative case report was drawn up: Hikmat Aliyev
Defender: Elnura Zeynalova
Oppositional National Council of Democratic Forces, Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan and Musavat Party declared the date of the protest rally in Baku at Mahsul stadium regarding the early elections of the president in Azerbaijan on April 11, 2018. The rally was set for March 10, 2018. In order to obtain the permission to hold the rally, the organizers sent a written appeal to the Baku Executive Power in accordance with the law. Having received a positive response, the activists of the National Council of Democratic Forces and the parties of the Popular Front of Azerbaijan and Musavat began to campaign in social networks.
A few days before the rally, the activists of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan, National Council of Democratic Forces and Musavat party were summoned to the police stations. According to these activists, the police officers demanded from them not to go to the rally, not to agitate other people and not to write statuses on social networks about the meeting. This tactic was used by the authorities in 2017 when the National Council of Democratic Forces has organized a number of rallies with slogans “No monarchy”, “No corruption”, “Freedom for political prisoners”, etc. According to the newspaper Azadliq, before the rally on 10 March 2018, 104 members of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan were summoned to the police stations and 7 of them were arrested: Aqil Maharramov – for 15 days, Yalchin Abdullayev – for 15 days, Faiq Nagiyev – for 20 days, Tahir Agayev – for 15 days, Bashir Tarverdiyev – for 20 days, Hikmat Aliyev – for 15 days, Shahin Aliyev was fined 200 manat (AZN).
Attention should be paid to the dates of arrests: members of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan were arrested from 7 to 10 March, 2018, i.e., before the rally. All of them were held administratively responsibility in accordance with the article 535.1. (insubordination to legal demands of police) of the Code of Administrative Offences of the Azerbaijan Republic and sentenced to 15-20 days of administrative arrest.
According to the police report, Hikmat Aliyev was detained on March 7, 2018 approximately at 19:30 near the administrative building of the 6th station of the police. Furthermore, according to the report, he loudly swore and violated public order near the building of the police station. And the police officers tried to call him to order and asked to get to the office. But H. Aliyev disobeyed their legal demands, made a scandal within the station, thereby violating the working mode of the station.
Hikmat Aliyev is an activist of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan, one of the oppositional parties that are members of the National Council of Democratic Forces.
During the trial the police officers only testified.
On March 08, 2018 the judge of Binagadi District Court of Baku City Vugar Mammadovhad found Aqil Maharramov guilty of an offence under the article 510 (disorderly conduct) and the article 535.1. (insubordination to legal demands of the police) of the Code of Administrative Offences of the Azerbaijan Republic and sentenced him to 15 days of administrative arrest.
Commentary by an expert lawyer:
The court decision is unlawful and groundless. The judgement shows that, except the police officers who have made the report, there weren’t any witnesses. No one testified in favor of Hikmat Aliyev. The resolution is based only on the report of the police officer and H. Aliyev’s confession. There is no other evidence against the detained person.
The legislation of the Azerbaijan Republic on administrative offenses has the task to protect human rights and freedoms of a person and a citizen, health care, sanitary and epidemiologic welfare of the population, protection of public morality, personal property and personal economic interests, public order and public security, environment and to establish arrangements of management, strengthening of the law and prevention of administrative offenses (article 2 of the Code). If we read this article carefully, we will see that protection of human rights and freedoms of the person was the first and then all other goals followed. In this case, the protection of the rights and freedom of H. Aliyev did not happen. The court issued an unmotivated resolution, did not provide reasons for its rule of the most severe punishment – administrative detention.
The article 6 (1) of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms requires that judgments are motivated. In the judgement of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in the case García Ruiz v. Spain on January 21, 1999 states, “The Court reiterates that, according to its established case-law reflecting a principle linked to the proper administration of justice, judgments of courts and tribunals should adequately state the reasons on which they are based. The extent to which this duty to give reasons applies may vary according to the nature of the decision and must be determined in the light of the circumstances of the case”.
According to the article 5 (1) of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, everyone has the right to liberty and security of person. No one shall be deprived of his or her liberty except in the cases and in the manner prescribed by law In the case of H. Aliyev, the fundamental principles of administrative proceedings were also violated. Thus, administrative proceedings should be based on the principles of respect for human rights and freedoms of a person and a citizen, legality, equality and the rule of law, the presumption of innocence, justice and prevention of administrative offenses.
Given the circumstances of H. Aliyev’s arrest: his membership in the oppositional party, his activity to call citizens for participation in the rally on March 10, 2018, as well as the absence of any legal basis for his arrest. It should be noted that the arrest of the party member and his politically- motivated persecution led to discrimination, which is prohibited by national and international law.
Regarding the detained activist, the article 25 of the Constitution of Azerbaijan Republic was violated. According to this article:
I. All people are equal with respect to the law and law court.
III. The state guarantees equality of rights and liberties of everyone, irrespective of
race, nationality, religion, language, sex, origin, financial position, occupation,
political convictions, membership in political parties, trade unions and other
public organizations. Rights and liberties of a person, citizen cannot be restricted
due to race, nationality, religion, language, sex, origin, conviction, political and
social belonging. The article 14 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms prohibits discrimination on all grounds. It states, «The enjoyment of the rights and freedoms set forth in this Convention shall be secured without discrimination on any ground such as sex, race, colour, language, religion, political or other
opinion, national or social origin, association with a national minority, property, birth or other status”.
The article 14 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms does not have independent meaning, it only supplements other articles of the European Convention and the Protocols thereto. In the case of H. Aliyev, this article should be considered in the light of the article 5 (1) of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. It means that a violation of the right to freedom was discrimination of the detainee for political motives because of his political beliefs.
Hikmat Aliyev was condemned for political motives as well as other members of oppositional parties on the eve of the oppositional rally on March 10, 2018.