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Azerbaijani Opposition Leader Arrested In Baku

  • RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service

BAKU -- The deputy chairman of Azerbaijan's opposition Popular Front Party, Fuad Qahramanli, has been arrested in Baku in connection with a deadly security operation in the city's suburbs last month.

Baku's Nasimi District Court ruled late on December 8 that Qahramanli should be held in pretrial detention for three months.

Qahramanli's lawyer, Fahraddin Mehdiyev, told RFE/RL that his client was charged with publicly calling for the overthrow of the government and with inciting ethnic, religious, and social hatred.

Mehdiyev said Qahramanli's arrest was linked to his posts on Facebook about the recent security operation against alleged religious extremists in the village of Nardaran, where seven people, including two police officers, were killed on November 26.

Qahramanli pleaded not guilty. His lawyer says he will appeal against his arrest.