Friday wrap-up: Trials, Armenian elections and Azerigaz accusations

The week of 21-25 June in Azerbaijan, explained.

Иллюстрация Мейдан ТВ

The week of 21-25 June saw Karabakh protesters and Armenian prisoners on trial, Baku’s comments on the Armenian election results and accusation against Azerigaz.

Karabakh protesters sentenced while the trial against Armenian prisoners begins

Twelve more people have been


in connection with the rally in support of Karabakh and the army, which took place on the night of 14-15 July 2020 in Baku. Among them are a member of the Presidium of the Popular Front Party, Karabakh veteran Asif Yusifli, party activists Seymur Ahmadzade, Mushfig Guliyev, Elnur Jabbarli and others.

They have been charged with illegal entry into the parliament building, among other related charges.

Defendants received suspended sentences ranging from two to three years. Despite the suspended sentence, the defendants voiced their dissatisfaction with the verdict and vowed to appeal. They say they are innocent and demand an acquittal.

At the same time, the trial of 13 more Armenian citizens has started in Baku.

They were brought before a judge for the first time on 22 June at the Baku Court of Grave Crimes. They have been charged with terrorism and violation of the state borders of Azerbaijan. The number of Armenian citizens on trial in the country is now at 40. Two previous trials of groups of fourteen and thirteen people on the same charges have already begun.

Azerbaijan’s troll network on Facebook

This week we published about how Facebook trolls spread pro-regime sentiment in Azerbaijan.

Former Facebook employee Sophie Zhang, who worked on data analysis, conducted a study and found out that such fake accounts in Azerbaijan are controlled by the ruling YAP party. She said that thousands of comments are being written from these accounts in order to discredit rivals and direct public opinion.

Zhang says that it usually takes two to three months to "expose" the owners of fake Facebook accounts, but it was much easier for her to reveal those related to Azerbaijan. According to her, the local “dummy users” do not even hide what they are doing.

Baku officially comments on Armenian elections

Baku has officially


on the early parliamentary elections in Armenia, which took place on 20 June.

The statement came from Azerbaijani Foreign Minister Jeyhun Bayramov at a briefing after a meeting with visiting Kazakh Foreign Minister Mukhtar Tleuberdi in Baku the day after the elections.

"We hope that the Armenian government will analyze the cause of the crisis and draw the right conclusions", Bayramov stated.

He said that many attribute the crisis to the Armenian defeat in the 2020 War, and also commented that the implementation of some provisions of the trilateral statement on Karabakh have been delayed, criticizing the Armenian government's hesitancy to provide mine maps.

Former Azerigaz Deputy Chief accuses company of violating rights

Elsevar Islamov, deputy head of the Agsu Regional Gas Operation Department, was


in February 2020 for abuse of office. Islamov filed a lawsuit against the Azerigaz Production Association in response.

Islamov told Meydan TV that on 25 February last year, he was summoned to the room of Jahid Huseynov, the deputy director general for sales and operation of the union. In the room, the head of the legal department, Vugar Eyvazov, and Jahid Huseynov threatened him and forced him to file a complaint.

He was accused of demanding a bribe. Islamov believes the problem is related to disputes he had with the head of the Agsu Regional Gas Operation Department, where he repeatedly reported shortcomings to the management there.

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