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Azerbaijani Opposition Activist Detained On Drugs Charges


Youth activist Cabbar Savalan

Youth activist Cabbar Savalan

BAKU -- An opposition youth activist has been detained on drugs-possession charges his supporters say are trumped up, RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service reports.

Cabbar Savalan, 20, was detained in Sumqayit north of Baku on February 5 with what police said was 0.17 grams of drugs on him.

The police declined to provide further details.

Savalan is a member of the opposition Azerbaijan Popular Front Party's (APFP) youth organization.

Abulfaz Qurbanli, head of the APFP youth organization, told RFE/RL Savalan was a newcomer to the party and had been pursued by police because of his involvement in recent opposition gatherings.

According to Qurbanli, the drugs were planted on Savalan for political reasons. He said the APFP youth organization had established a committee to defend Savalan's rights.

A group of local human rights defenders denounced the detention, also linking it to Savalan's social activity.

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