Swedish Presidency of the European Union
OSCE Permanent Council No. 770
Vienna 23 July 2009
EU Statement on the arrest of two Azerbaijani youth
The EU has learnt with deep concern about the arrest and the
remand into custody of two Azerbaijani youth organisation
members, Mr. Emin Milli and Mr. Adnan Hajizade.
We recall various appeals in this respect by the International
Community who were asking for fairness and transparency of the
legal proceedings. In particular, we would like to emphasize that the
issue has also been discussed during the talks held by the EU
Ministerial Troika with the authorities of Azerbaijan on 20 July in
We remind Azerbaijan of its commitments on democracy and good
governance, the rule of law, the independence of the judiciary and
the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms made in
connection with its OSCE participation and its membership in the
Council of Europe, as well as in its relations with the EU, including in
the framework of the Eastern Partnership. We recall the EU’s
concerns regarding the media situation in Azerbaijan as expressed
in the PC on 9 July and call on Azerbaijan to make full use of
suggestions and recommendations of the Representative on the
Freedom of the Media.
In the case of Mr. Emin Milli and Mr. Adnan Hajizade, the EU
encourages the Azerbaijani authorities to ensure that the next
appropriate legal steps are in full compliance with Azerbaijan’s
international commitments, in particular the right to a fair trial within
reasonable time and the right to a transparent and unbiased
investigation of the allegations made against the two youth activists.
We would be grateful to be informed in due course of the outcome
of this issue. In this context the EU recalls its statements in the PC
on 9 July on the significant shortcomings of the Azerbaijani judiciary.
In conclusion, the EU reiterates its support for further political and
legal reforms in Azerbaijan aimed at convergence on European
standards. It is recalled that the EU has welcomed several steps
taken by the Azerbaijani authorities over the last few months,
notably the amnesty in March 2009 and the progress made with
respect to access to persons in custody and in court rooms as well
as the adoption of a number of important National Strategies
addressing human rights.
The candidate countries CROATIA* and FORMER YUGOSLAV
REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA*, the countries of the Stabilisation and
Association Process and potential candidate countries ALBANIA,
BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA and MONTENEGRO, as well as the
European Free Trade Association countries and members of the
European Economic Area ICELAND and NORWAY align themselves with this statement.
*Croatia and Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia continue to
be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process.