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Baku Ordered To Pay Compensation To Prominent Rights Defenders


Leyla and Arif Yunus

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ordered Azerbaijan to pay 40,000 euros ($45,660) as compensation to prominent human rights activists Leyla Yunus and her husband, Arif Yunus, for violating their basic rights.

In a ruling made public on July 16 , the Strasbourg-based court ordered Baku to pay 20,000 euros ($22,830) to each applicant.

The ECHR ruled that Azerbaijani authorities violated the couple's right to liberty and security, their right to a fair trial, their right to privacy and family life, their right to an effective remedy, their right to the protection of property, and their right to freedom of movement.

Leyla Yunus, 61, and Arif Yunus, 62, were arrested separately in 2014 and convicted of economic crimes in August 2015 after a trial that the couple and international human rights groups denounced as a travesty of justice.

They were released on health grounds in late 2015 and their prison sentences reduced to suspended sentences.

In April 2016. they were allowed to leave the country and have been residing in the Netherlands since then.

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