With a number of journalists in prison, Azerbaijan’s authorities are now attacking ordinary citizen’s freedom of speech. A 58-year-old man in Nakhichevan, Azerbaijan’s “region without rights,” has been given an 18-month-sentence for writing dozens of “slanderous” anonymous letters to government officials.


In the words of Azeri Press Agency (APA):


APA’s local bureau reports the investigations found out that resident of Gahab village of Babek region, Aliyev Novruz Safar, 58, had written tens of groundless slanderous letters.

Novruz Aliyev faced charges under article 147.2 (slander, which is connected with accusation of committing serious or especially serious crime) of the Criminal Code. Nakhchivan city court sentenced Novruz Aliyev to 18 months in jail.


In the meantime, Azerbaijan is building new prisons, one of which was opened in Nakhichevan in summer 2008.