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Azerbaijani Activists Raise Funds To Pay Protesters' Fines In Small Coins

Azerbaijanis protest against deaths in the army in Baku on January 12.
BAKU -- Azerbaijani activists say they have raised 11,600 manats ($14,770) to pay fines for protesters who have been fined hundreds of dollars under a new law on mass gatherings.

Representatives of the Positive Change youth movement told RFE/RL on January 21 that the money will be delivered to the authorities in the form of five-qapik coins (100 qapiks = 1 manat) if the protesters lose their appeal and the fines are confirmed.

The campaign to raise the money was launched last week after more than 20 men were fined for participating in a Baku demonstration on January 12.

The event was aimed at raising awareness about the deaths of army conscripts.

The men have been ordered to pay fines ranging from $380 to $760 (300 to 600 manats) each, adding up to a total of $13,400.