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Public Defender of Georgia Echoes Disappearance of Azeri Journalist

May 30, 2017

As far as the Public Defender of Georgia has been informed, Azerbaijani journalist Afgan Mukhtarli, living in Tbilisi, went missing yesterday, May 29. According to a family member, his journalistic activities were aimed at disclosing the actions of the Azerbaijani authorities. According to the same person, unknown persons had been recently following Afgan Mukhtarli. The family members have already appealed to the police concerning the disappearance of Afgan Mukhtarli.

The Public Defender of Georgia considers that the law enforcement agencies should urgently and effectively respond to the mentioned case. First of all, it is important the state to take all measures to prevent the crime in a timely manner, and then to bring offenders to justice and adequately punish them.  The Georgian state shall ensure full protection of the rights of all persons living on its territory. The developments ongoing in the neighboring states[1] should not affect the respect for human rights in the Georgian state. All persons living in Georgia should have a sense of security and lawful and fair treatment. There should be no suspicion that the state turns a blind eye to a crime or neglects the disappearance of Afgan Mukhtarli.




[1] It is indicated in the Resolution 2141 (2017), adopted by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe this year, that the independent media and defenders of freedom of expression have serious problems in Azerbaijan.