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Exiled Former President Returns To Azerbaijan For Son's Funeral


WATCH: Exiled former Azerbaijani President Ayaz Mutallibov returns to Baku after 19 years

BAKU -- Former Azerbaijani President Ayaz Mutallibov has returned to Baku after 19 years living in Moscow, RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service reports.

Araz Alizadeh, who with Mutallibov co-chairs the Azerbaijan Social Democrat Party (ASDP), told RFE/RL that Mutallibov came to Baku on August 8 to attend the funeral of his son Azad, who died earlier today of cancer at the age of 49.

A ceremony is to take place on August 9 at Baku's Taza Pir Mosque and Azad Mutallibov will be buried in the Azerbaijani capital's Yasamal Cemetery.

Mutallibov, 73, used a VIP exit at the airport, refused to talk to reporters, and was driven away in a waiting car, RFE/RL reports.

Alizadeh refused to say where Mutallibov will stay while in Baku. He said Mutallibov is grateful to President Ilham Aliyev for allowing him to come to Baku.

Mutallibov was president from 1990-92, when he was ousted and forced into exile in Moscow.

He was unable to attend his father's funeral some years ago due to the criminal case opened against him in 1993-95, which is still pending.

Mutallibov is accused of facilitating the entry into Baku on January 20, 1990 of Soviet troops who opened fire indiscriminately on residents; failing to prevent the killings of some 600 Azerbaijani villagers in Nagorno-Karabakh in February 1992; and plotting in 1996 and 2001 to oust President Heydar Aliyev, Ilham's father.

Read and and watch more in Azeri here

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