COs freed in amnesty in Azerbaijan – to mark President's birthday...

en

Azerbaijan's two known imprisoned conscientious objectors – both Jehovah's Witnesses - have been freed as part of a prisoner amnesty to mark what would have been the late President Heydar Aliev's 90th birthday. Of the two known imprisoned conscientious objectors, Fakhraddin Mirzayev was amnestied on 22 May after eight months' imprisonment and Kamran Mirzayev (no relation) was amnestied on 20 June after three months' imprisonment.

There is no indication that this might impact the future imprisonment of COs, who are detained under Article 321.1 of the Criminal Code which states that: "Evasion without lawful grounds of call-up to military service or of mobilisation, with the purpose of evading serving in the military, is punishable by imprisonment for up to two years [in peacetime]".

Sources: Forum 18, AZERBAIJAN: Conscientious objectors amnestied, imam and driver not freed, 31 July 2013.

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