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Afgan Mukhtarli in Azerbaijan

Written Questions

Question for written answer to the Vice-President of the Commission / High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

Marietje Schaake (ALDE)

Subject: Afgan Mukhtarli in Azerbaijan

On 29 May 2017, Afgan Mukhtarli, an Azeri journalist, was abducted blocks from his home in Tbilisi,
Georgia by unidentified men. Mukhtarli 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

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

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

What action is the EEAS undertaking in response to the Parliament's call in the January 2019
resolution to ensure that the release of political prisoners in Azerbaijan remains a priority in EUAzerbaijan
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?