10 years in prison for Akbar Naimi

Azerbaijani human rights defender, Akbar Naimi sent to Evin prison to serve his 9 years and 8 month prison sentence.

On July 19,2021, Iran’s security forces arrested Akbar Naimi in Tabriz, while he was waiting for appeal court’s decision and his lawyer was not aware of court’s decision. According to our sources, he called his family and acknowledge them about his situation in Tehran’s Evin prison.

Before this In Feb,21 2014, Iran’s ministry of intelligence agents had arrested Naimi in a private event for celebrating International Mother Language’s day set by UNESCO and charged him for being a member of a group to act against national security, consensus, and collusion for committing crime against national security, and running propaganda against Islamic republic of Iran. He was released temporarily for 24000$ bail after 55 days of being in solidity confinement. Judge Iman Afshari convicted Mr. Naimi and sentence him to 9-year and 8-month jail sentence for these allegations. Iranian government also pressured Naimi’s employer to fire him, and they banned him from traveling abroad.

Mr. Naimi’s interrogation was about his activities to defend human rights and covering cases of human rights violation in Iran. Intillegence service agents told him ”despite the lack of evidence to prove that you were writing news about Azerbaijani political prisoners, we’ve made our mind to send you in jail for 10 years and the judge is going to sign under our decision.” During the trial judge was threatening Naimi aggressively. Naimi did not have a fair trial and his trial took place in 5 minutes and his lawyer did not have a chance to defend him.

Akbar Naimi is a mechanical engineer, who was fixing Iran’s commercial fleets in Iran’s national aviation(Homa). He was also co-funder of NGOs Evrin & Guna Bakhan, which were working to nourish Azerbaijani culture language and music.

Azerbaijanis in Iran are Turkic speaking population, and they are 25%-40% of Iran’s population. Despite having a big population, Azerbaijanis in Iran are subjected to systematic discrimination. Azerbaijani Turkic language is banned in Iranian schools, courts, and offices and Azerbaijan’s mins are looted without having any benefit for the indigenous population of the area. Also, Environment of Azerbaijan provinces has been destroyed by Iranian government to force Azerbaijani Turks leave their homeland and to let Iran pursue its security goals. Iranian government is trying to suppress ethnic minority Azerbaijani in Iran and silence their human rights defenders.

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