Missing opposition activist returns home (UPDATE)

Popular Front of Azerbaijan Party activist Fatima Movlamli

Popular Front of Azerbaijan Party activist Fatima Movlamli

UPDATE: Fatima Movlamli has returned home.

Journalist Khadija Ismayilova tweeted: "17 years old activist is back home, says she is safe and was not arrested. She is upset about publications in progovernment fake media about her being detained in cafe by moral police for inappropriate actions."

Fatima Movlamli, a 17-year-old activist with the Popular Front of Azerbaijan Party (PFAP), has been missing since attending the opposition rally on 31 March. 

Movlamli’s relatives called the Ministry of Internal Affairs hotline 102, but law enforcement officers say they have no information about her whereabouts. Movlamli last spoke with her family immediately after the rally on 31 March. They fear that she may have been detained because of her political views.

On the eve of her disappearance, Movlamli posted on her Facebook page:

“How dishonorable a person must be to sacrifice their conscience for 5-10 manats, to abuse those who fight for justice, to perjure themselves in court and thereby feed their family….And how honorable a person must be who, unafraid of threats and hardships, goes out into the square to demand justice? I’m proud that tomorrow I’ll stand shoulder to shoulder with those who demand freedom!”

Fatima Movlamli was involved in the flash mob "Let's Talk About the Dictator.” The campaign unites activists both inside Azerbaijan and abroad who oppose the candidacy of incumbent President Ilham Aliyev in the snap elections on 11 April.

On 26 March, Movlamli was summoned to a police station in the Binagadi district of Baku and interrogated about her participation in the campaign. “For a full five hours they talked about the need to "rally around Ilham Aliyev." After that I was released. But such things can’t make me give up my convictions," said Movlamli at the 31 March opposition rally in Baku.

Last updated at 16:00 on 6 April 2018

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