Friday Wrap-up: Saleh Rustamov’s case, Aliyev and Pashinyan meeting and citizens against pollution

The week of 22-26 November saw a mobilization in favor of journalist Saleh Rustamov, the announcement of a meeting between Azerbaijan and Armenia representatives and Sumgayit’s residents appeal to President Aliyev.

An artist’s interpretation of air pollution in the city of Sumqayit. Illustration: Meydan TV

The week of 22-26 November saw a mobilization in favor of Saleh Rustamov, the announcement of a meeting between Azerbaijan and Armenia representatives and Sumgayit’s residents appeal to President Aliyev.

Activists release a note in support of Saleh Rustamov

Human rights activists, NGO representatives, lawyers and public figures appealed to the President Aliyev for the immediate release of Saleh Rustamov, who has been on hunger strike in prison for 18 days.

Rustamov was convicted in 2018 of drug trafficking and money laundering. He refuses the charges and believes his imprisonment is politically motivated, as he has been a member of the opposition party Azerbaijan Popular Front Party for many years. In addition, while living in Russia, he sent money to families of political prisoners for supporting their livelihood.

The decision to start a hunger strike came when President Aliyev, on the occasion of the “Victory Day”, granted amnesty to several people. It was expected that Rustamov’s name would be on the list, but that was not the case.

Aliyev and Pashinyan scheduled to meet with Putin

Trilateral talks between Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev, Russian President Vladimir Putin and Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan will be held in Sochi on November 26.

In the agenda, there is a review of the post-Fall 2020 War agreement implementation, as well as talks on how to strengthen stability and establish peace in the region. Special topics to be discussed are the development of trade, economy and transport between the countries. 

Aliyev and Pashinyan had already agreed to meet in Brussels on December 15, on the initiative of the head of the European Council. However, the meeting with Putin was quickly arranged before it.

The mobilization of Sumgayit’s residents against pollution

Factories and a burning open dump around Sumgayit make the life quality of its residents poor. They complain of the smell and the intense air pollution, which even blocks the sunlight. Many complaints have been made, from the municipality to ministries, but the problem persists.

Tired of public power inaction, the residents of the city launched a campaign to collect signatures in a petition explaining the issues and listing citizen’s demands. The letter was later sent to President Ilham Aliyev.

The residents appeal to Aliyev for closing the open dump, for implementing air quality monitoring and that these measures are made available to the public online. By writing to the president, they hope that their issues will finally be solved, as the pollution problems have intensified in recent months.

Ana səhifəFeaturedFriday Wrap-up: Saleh Rustamov’s case, Aliyev and Pashinyan meeting and citizens against pollution