The chief editor of the Tolyshi Sado newspaper, former ‘prisoner of conscience,’ Hilal Mammadov, was called on September 19 to the Nizami police station, where he was presented a claim in connection with his participation in the opposition rallies and demanded an end to his ties with the opposition. Mammadov said in response that he realized his freedoms and did not intend to limit them.
Mammadov told Turan that yesterday about 15.00 a local policeman summoned him to the deputy chief of the 25th police station of the Nizami District Police, Elnur Aliyev, for a conversation.
They came together to the office, and only an hour later Aliyev received Mammadov, and they had a short 2-3 minute conversation, during which the officer asked for what Mammadov was previously sentenced.
Next Aliyev suggested that Mammadov should wait to be received by the boss. As it turned out, this department has not got a chief now, so Aliyev himself is the acting head.
After two hours, Mammadova was again called to Aliyev, in whose office there was another operative officer called Ehtibar.
They began to rebuke Mammadov for his participation in the opposition rallies. Then he was insulted by Ehtibar.
Mammadov was told the police had closed the ‘slave markets,’ where the opposition hired people to participate in the meetings for AZN 5-10 or even for small exchange.
In response, Mammadov said that such a situation is evidence of serious problems in the country, as the people are ready to go to rallies for a penny. In general, the unemployed have the right to rise for the defense of their rights.
Then the employee Ehtibar burst of anger and nearly attacked Mammadov.
Then Mammadov was kept for another hour, and then he was called to another room, where the composition of his family and the names of his brothers and sisters were recorded.
By collecting these data, the police made it clear that it would put pressure on his relatives, Mammadov said.
Then Mammadov was taken to the Deputy Chief of the Nizami District Police Office.
He began to tell Mammadov that, being an intellectual, he should not engage in ‘anti-state’ rallies. He was strongly demanded to stay farther away from the opposition.
Mammadov said that, firstly, the opposition rallies had been sanctioned, and secondly as a free man, he was not going to coordinate his actions and limit his own rights.
In conclusion, Mammadov was told that he could be called to police later.
Mammadov told Turan that after his release from prison he has been periodically put under pressure, and the police and intelligence services are interested in his life.
Hilal Mammadov was arrested in June 2012, a few days after placing a video with the famous song ‘Who Are You? Go! Bye-bye!’ on Youtube. In his comments Mammadov wrote the single clip more glorified Azerbaijan than the authorities, who spent a lot of money on the Eurovision Song Contest.
On September 27th, 2013 he was sentenced by the Baku Court of Grave Crimes to 5 years in prison on charges of drug trafficking, treason and inciting ethnic hatred. Amnesty International recognized Mammadov ‘prisoner of conscience.’ In February 2016 the ECtHR found a violation of Mammadov’s rights guaranteed by Article 3 (prohibition of torture). In March this year Mammadov was pardoned by the President.