Sources: turan.az, omct.org
The Baku Court of Grave Crimes on August 3, 2015 postponed the trial of Azerbaijani human rights defenders Leyla and Arif Yunus due to Arif’s deteriorating health,
Turan News Agency
During the hearing, the Azerbaijani authorities restricted access to the courtroom for international independent observers. No representatives of the independent press were allowed into the room. After multiple hurdles, the representatives of the USA and EU embassies were allowed in, but their interpreters were denied access to the courtroom.
Shortly after the beginning of the trial, an ambulance was called to the courthouse to provide healthcare to Arif Yunus, who fainted due to high blood pressure. The trial was adjourned. Around 11.50AM, Yunus regained consciousness.
The trial against spouses Leyla and Arif Yunus is allegedly marred why serious human rights violations, according to human rights groups. The defendants’ health is rapidly deteriorating, per observers. The
World Organization Against Torture
called for the immediate release of Leyla and Arif Yunus, saying: “The Observatory urges the Azeri authorities to immediately put an end to the detention of Ms. Yunus and Mr. Yunusov on humanitarian grounds in view of their deteriorating health, and change it into house arrest as a first step to dropping all charges against them, as their detention seems to only aim at sanctioning their activities amidst a wave of ongoing repression against civil society organisations and representatives in Azerbaijan.”