Originally published on September 3, 2014, at ForceChange.com
Target: Ilham Aliyev, President of Azerbaijan
Goal: Investigate the ruthless attack against a journalist reporting on human rights abuses
Known for raising international awareness about human rights violations in Azerbaijan, investigative journalist Ilgar Nasibov was severely beaten by unknown assailants. After receiving multiple death threats in the past two years for his work, Nasibov had been visiting his wife’s office when the attackers broke in and brutally assaulted him. The government of Azerbaijan must provide justice to Nasibov and his family by investigating this horrific attack and prosecuting those responsible for the assault.
On August 21, several unidentified assailants entered the Resource Center for Development of NGOs and Democracy and ruthlessly attacked Nasibov. After beating him unconscious, they ransacked the office and fled. Nasibov was left seriously injured with broken ribs, cheekbones, nose, and a concussion. Nasibov had initially been taken to a local hospital for immediate treatment. Fearing further attacks against her husband, Nasibov’s wife chose to move her husband back home for security purposes.
The Resource Center for Development of NGOs and Democracy is an independent group working to restore justice to victims of human rights abuses. While investigating the death of Turaj Zeynalov due to police torture, the Resource Center has received numerous anonymous threats. The Turan News Agency has also received multiple death threats for covering Zeynalov’s brutal death at the hands of police officers.
By signing the petition below you will urge the President of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, to investigate this vicious attack and prevent further attacks against journalists and human rights workers.
Dear President Ilham Aliyev,
While visiting his wife’s office at the Resource Center for Development of NGOs and Democracy, investigative journalist Ilgar Nasibov was savagely beaten for his work exposing human rights violations. While his attackers remain free, Nasibov cannot even receive treatment at the local hospital for fear of death threats or further violence. By allowing these perpetrators to get away with this crime, your government only encourages an escalation of violence against journalists and human rights advocates in your country.
Suffering from broken ribs, cheekbones, nose, and a concussion, Nasibov has been receiving anonymous death threats for the past two years because of his and his wife’s work exposing human rights violations. Instead of ignoring or covering up allegations of police torture, your government needs to launch an investigation into these charges and punish any officers guilty of committing abuses. Allowing journalists to be brutalized for covering these cases merely sends a message condoning these human rights violations. Provide justice for Nasibov and his family while ensuring these attacks never happen again by punishing the guilty parties.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Dan Nevill via Flickr