The Problem of Southern Azerbaijan

No.: 488/ 2008

Date: 24 March  2008

 

The Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights, Geneva

Please circulate this letter to (i) The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (also for Fair Trials) and (ii) Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers. It is also of interest to:

·    Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression

·    Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance

·    The Independent Expert on Minority Issues

CC      Mr Dyke and Mrs. Harrison, Amnesty International, London

Also:   Human Rights Watch and Human Rights Server

 

Mr. Abbas Leysanli

 

a prison of conscience

 

Dear sir/madam,

 

Update 11    FORCED DEPORTATION OF MR. LEYSANLI FROM SOUTHERN AZERBAIJAN TO FARSI-SPEAKING PROVINCES OF IRAN

 

Please find enclosed Update 11 to our Communication 1 on Mr. Leysanli, which was lodged originally as a complaint (Ref: 378/2006 on 31 August 2006), and followed by a series of Updates and Bulletins. In Update 10 (Ref: 478/2008 on 13 January 2008) we informed you of his transfer to Eher prison, in Southern Azerbaijan. Since then the Iranian authorities have kept violating his human rights in every possible ways including creating obstacles to visits by his family members and keeping him in freezing cell conditions. This Update brings to your attention the very last straw drawn by Iranian authorities to make total their aversion to his human rights, who always complies with international law and has never broken Iranian laws even though he and his nation are victims of Iranian legislation and their implementations.

 

We regret to bring to your urgent attention that the Iranian authorities have now deported Mr. Leysanli from Eher prison, approximately 100Km from his hometown Erdebil, to the remote location of the central Yazd prison (approximately 2000Km away), in Farsi-speaking provinces of Iran. The deportation took place on 6 March, at which time Mr. Leysanli declared a hunger strike as a last resort for protesting against the violations of his human rights. The Iranian authorities used violence and intimidation in the process of deportation by their loyal Farsi-speaking units specially deployed for the occasion. This episode of deportation has exposed the true nature of the relationships between Southern Azerbaijan and the Iran, as follows:

  • If the May 2006 Mass Protests exposed a lack of power base for the Iranian rule in Southern Azerbaijan, this episode exposed that Iranian agents of Southern Azerbaijani origin do not obey their masters blindfolded and they have some loyalty left towards their own people.
  • Thus, the Iranian authorities have, in reality, kidnapped a national leader of Southern Azerbaijan to inflict on him bodily harm in medieval-style.

 

We believe that this episode provides concrete evidence that the Iranian authorities have come to regarding Southern Azerbaijan as their colonial backyard and are now resorting to terrorist acts to silence the nation of Southern Azerbaijan. We hold that that this is unworthy of any body to be granted the status of the “authority.” Detailed information is annexed in Tables 1.1 and 1.2, reproducing Press Releases issued by the Committee for the Defence of Abbas Leysanli.

 

Our updates to you were related to the Court Cases following the May 2006 Mass Protests but we have already informed you that there are other arbitrary court cases brought against him by Iranian authorities. These are outlined in the table below and further details are annexed in Table 2. We feel it necessary to reclassify our submissions to you in the defence of Mr. Leysanli. Thus, the submissions so far are in relation to Court Cases 5 and 6 and we shall shortly submit Communication 2 in relation to Court Case 3 to be followed by appropriate updates and a numbering system.

Court Cases Pressed by Iranian Authorities against Mr. Abbas Leysanli

Court Cases

Inception date

Outline of the Case

Status of the case

Further information

Court Case 1

25 Aug. 2003

Annual Babek Assembly-1

Closed

Ref: 246/2003 on 2 Sept. 2003

Court Case 2

22 June 2004

Sit-in Protests

Possibly closed

Ref: 246/2003 on 2 Sept. 2003

Court Case 3

27 June 2005

  Annual Babek Assembly-2

Communication 2

 Ref:283/ 2005 on 4 July 2005

Court Case 4

28 June 2005

The Baghir Khan Assembly

Ongoing

Ref: 246/2003 on 2 Sept. 2003

Court Cases 5-6

27 May 2007

  The May 2006 Mass Protests

Communication 1

 Ref: 378/2006 on 31 Aug 2006

We are likely not to provide you further Updates on Court Cases 5 and 6. Therefore Table 3 in the annex provides you the log of our updates and other correspondences relating to Mr. Leysanli and Table 4 provide the chronology of most important events whilst Mr. Leysanli served the arbitrary sentence imposed on him.

We believe and hope that you have made representations to the Islamic Republic of Iran to safeguard his human rights and for this we thank you and Amnesty International for your respective roles.

Yours faithfully,

Boyuk Resuloglu

The Committee for the Defence of the Rights of World Azerbaijanis

 

Table 1.1: Press Release by The Committee for the Defence of Mr. Abbas Leysanli

Source: http://www.lisani.blogfa.com/post-93.aspx

 

Update 1

Mr. Abbas Lisani, the prominent Azerbaijani activist, has now been arbitrarily banished by Iranian authorities. He is now believed to be sent out to a prison in Yazd, a city in Central Iran and remote from Ardabil, Mr. Lisani’s hometown in Azerbaijan of Iran. He was serving a 12 months prison term in a prison in the city of Ahar near his hometown.

Our reliable sources have confirmed that in the process of the extradition by force from Ahar prison, Mr. Lisani was subjected to physical violence by being battered and kicked. During the deportation he was handcuffed and shackled.

His wife, Mrs. Ruqeyye Lisani, expressed her deep concern about the events and stated that "this deportation to Yazd is an outright illegal act."

According to her, "this deportation is another straw drawn by Iranian authorities to escalate their arbitrary treatment against Mr. Lisani. Now we are faced with long travel distances between Ardabil and Yazd to the extent that it will make our visits nearly impossible."

She added, "Abbas has let it be known that he shall resort to a hunger strike as the last option remaining to him to protest against the ongoing arbitrary treatments."

Our Committee is piecing together very muddled jigsaws of Iranian arbitrary acts. We now have reasons to believe that the Ministry of Information did not receive full cooperation from their local agents both in Ahar and Ardabil, where their failure to inflict the act of flogging on Mr. Lisani is a classic example of this lack of cooperation. Thus, they lacked full control over his case.

The deportation has been designed to overcome a number of weaknesses in the authority’s control over Mr. Lisani. In the first place, they are hoping to stop any information leakage. He will be kept among high-risk prisoners in Yazd; the Yazd prison authorities have been told to obey the higher authorities to the letter.

From now on, Mr. Lisani’s three young children will no longer be able to visit their dad, whose safety and wellbeing will be in the hands of unknown individuals.

We believe that the life of Mr Lisani is in great danger. We ask the entire international community to speak out on behalf of Mr. Lisani.

Contact information:

Committee for Abbas Lisani’s rights

e-mail: committee.lisani@gmail.com

Fakhteh Zamani (Canada) + 1 604 677 2524

Table 1.2: Press Release (Update 2) by The Committee for the Defence of Mr. Abbas Leysanli

Source: http://www.lisani.blogfa.com/post-112.aspx

Monday 17 March 2008

Update 2         Abbas Leysanli’s Poor Physical Conditions in Yazd Prison

It is now 12 days since the commencement of the hunger strike by Abbas Leysanli as a last resort for protesting against Iranian authorities, who used violence and deported him from Eher prison, in the vicinity of his hometown, to the remote location of the central Yazd prison.

According to our authentic information sources, his physical conditions are deteriorating rapidly. He is already suffering from kidney problems for enduring physical torture over the times in the past and undergoing long periods of hunger strikes. His health has been undermined for being denied of the right of access to medical care.

Prison authorities not only deny him access to a medical care but exert psychological pressure on him. He has now been transferred to the quarantine unit of the central Yazd prison, which is deemed unsuitable for looking after a patient with kidney problems let alone a person under a hunger strike. Notwithstanding the deprivation from all these basic human rights, his family members have been denied of the right of access to visit him.

The Committee for the Defence of Abbas Leysanli appeals to you all organisations and individuals active on the defence of human rights and urges you to mobilise your campaign as soon as possible. Active international campaign has sustained the safety of this prisoner of conscience so far and only your active campaign shall ensure his safety towards the reinstatement of his human rights, as well as secure him urgent medical care of vital importance.

Contact Information:

The Committee for Abbas Lisani’s Rights

e-mail: committee.lisani@gmail.com

Fakhteh Zamani (Canada) + 1 604 677 2524

 

Table 2   Chronologic Overview of the Total Cases Brought By Iranian Authorities Against Mr. Leysanli

Introduction

The following chronology presents the sequence of arbitrary repressions inflicted on Mr. Abbas Leysanli by the authorities of the Islamic Republic of Iran. He is defending the national and human rights of the nation of Southern Azerbaijan, a nation that suffers the brute racist policies imposed of the Islamic Republic of Iran created exclusive privileges to the Farsi-speaking nation at the detriment of other nations living in their native homelands bounded by the country called Iran since 1935. The nation of Southern Azerbaijan is deprived of even the most basic right of education in mother language but this nation has a rich culture of dissidents towards securing their national and human rights. Mr. Leysanli is an ardent defender of his mother language, called Azerbaijani Turkic and he persistently asks in all the arbitrary court cases brought against him, to be tried in his mother language or asks for a translator.

Prior to 1997

He is known to have been under pressure from security agent by enduring insults and constant harassment

May 1997

The first Wave of repression:

Received an order (not a court order) to report to Etelaat of Ardabil at 35 Balixli Chay, Erdebil. This initiated the first wave of interrogations through increased degree of pressures to the point of physical torture and followed by intimidations and threats to himself and to his family.

June 2002

Participated in the Babek Annual Assembly, but this year this annual event was transformed from a gathering into an organized assembly with several speeches, concerts, poetry reciting, and plays were given. Also the event was explicit in promoting national rights of the nation of Southern Azerbaijan. This event invoked the thought in his mind to design and publish an Azerbaijani Turkic calendar for the event in June 2003.

15-17 March 2003

The second wave of repression:

Iranian security agents searched his house and business, but this time they had a court order.  Confiscated all his Azerbaijani Turkic books, music cassettes, video cassettes, around 600 copies of his designed and published calendar, handwritten articles and documents and whatever they could find related in his mother tongue

2003-2004

Iranian authorities changed their tactics in dealing with Mr. Leysanli by persistently trying to recruit him to work as an informant but this was in vain. After this they increased their harassment through the local police apparatus.

22 May 2003

The third wave of repression:

Interrogated for three hours by the Iranian security agents and was warned not to attend not to attend the Babek Annual Assembly. His reply was: “this is my right and I will attend at all costs.” The response of the agents was: “if you go you will be dead.”

Assumed: 17 July 2003

He arrived to Babek Hotel, in Keleyber at the outskirt of the Babek Castle on Thursday, 5:00 pm and carried out the annual ceremony in front of a very tightly policed.

25 August 2003

Court

Case

1

Court Case 1:

He was forced to a car by security agent around 4:30-5:00 pm; taken to an unknown location; and in parallel with this, his house and business was searched confiscating all his written material in Azerbaijani Turkic, which was an illegal act. He was detained in a solitary confinement in the Ministry of Information, during which he was subjected regularly to interrogations including an hour of physical torture and 2-3 hours of intensive and repeated questionings in each session. He resorted to a hunger strike for 5 days as a protest to these arbitrary acts but was then transferred to Erdebil prison after 20 days. This led to a court case and an arbitrary sentence of 1 year and exile to Masjed- Soleyman in the province pf Khuzestan.

25 October 2003

Organized a commemoration to be held at the mausoleum site of the Southern Azerbaijani historian, Prof. Mehemmed Taghi Zehtabi. A handful of Iranian security agents appeared at his house the night before with an order from the Justice Department ordering him to stay in Erdebil and report to the office of security agents in Erdebil on 25 October 2003, asserting that leaving Erdebil will result in a certain arrest. So the event was cancelled.

22 June 2004

Court

Case

2

 

 

 

 

Court

Case

2

 

 

 

Court

Case

2

Court Case 2:

He took part in objecting to a visit by Armenian delegates to the Province of Erdebil. Sought s permit for an assembly but was denied. So a group of 80-100 activists resorted to a hunger strike as a protest in the form of sit-in in the Sarcheshme Mosque, Erdebil. Perceiving the oncoming repression, the protest was represented by 25 activists, asking the youth to leave.

Later at the night some 50-60 security agents raided the mosque with robber sticks; attacked the peaceful protesters; arrested the injured activists; handcuffed and took them to the police cars. Then they locked the doors, turned some of the lights off and attacked Mr. Leysanli with the intent to kill him inflicting the following incredible acts of torture:

·         Tying his hands and feet with a wire cable with an officer jumped and fell on his ribs four times;

·         Kicked him directly in his groin;

·         Proceeded to chock him by standing on his throat

·         Covered his mouth and nose with a blanket to suffocate him

The fainted and lifeless body of Mr. Leysanli was transferred to the office of the Ministry of Information in Erdebil, where he was attacked by a security agent. Of a one month detention, 20 days were spent in solitary confinement, with severe and life threatening injuries and also during this month-long detention, a combined number of 20 days were spent on hunger strike. He was deprived of:

·         Any medical care for his broken ribs, head, facial bones, fractured arm and feet;

·         Was urinating blood;

·         His left kidney was damaged

·         His left ear was bleeding

·         Both his eyes were swollen and

·         As a result of pulling his lifeless body on the ground, his skin on his back was peeled off with bruises all over

·         His requests for medical care were refused including prison treatments.

On the second of day of the arrest, was taken to the Erdebil court and sentenced to one month detention. The Judge also denied my request to see a doctor and he told the Ettelaat police that if they leaked the news of my injuries or my hunger strike to the public, they would be severely punished.  

All the participants were arbitrarily fined 800,000 Rials and sentenced to 15 floggings. All the activists spent 10 days in detention from whom all, except one, were on a 3-day hunger strike, which resulted in them being released. He could not participate in the Annual Babek Assembly for being detained. 

27 June 2005

Court

Case

3

Court Case 3:

He was presented with an order from the Justice Department by security gent not to participate in the Annual Babek Castle Assembly and had to present himself to the office of the Ministry of Information in Erdebil the next day. He then rejected them on the grounds that no authority is empowered to remove his right and freedom of association and called this summon as an illegal act on the basis of Article 9 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran.

28 June 2005

Court

Case

3

Rejecting the summon, three security agents called in at his house around 12 noon and searched there thoroughly but failed to find anything. This act did not even bother his three children playing in the garden of their house, signifying that the atmosphere of fear created by security agents were being a normal feature of their lives.

He headed with his family to Babek Castle at 10 pm even though his house was under usual surveillance. In the following act of cat-and-mouth chasing, he managed to lose them and making his way to the castle.

 

29 June 2005

Court

Case

3

Arrived at the Babek Hotel at 7:00 am. In the afternoon, around 5:00 pm, he was kidnapped by a couple of security agents posing as hotel guests. He spent 11 days in Eher prison, where he protested against this illegal detention by resorting to 8 days of hunger strike. This led to another sentence of one year of imprisonment.

After his release from this detention, and that of around 50 Azerbaijani activists, celebrated his temporary release at Babek castle. They were again surrounded by the police, attempting to arrest them but a group of locals intervened and rebuffed the police incursion. 

Note: We provided basic information in our letter: Ref: 246/2003 on 2 September 2003 and have provided updates since then but not in a coherent manner, e.g. 378/ 2006 on 31 August 2006

5 August 2005

Court

Case

4

Court Case 4:

He attended the commemoration of the Baghir Khan, an Azerbaijani national hero and a leader of the Constitutional movement to replace monarchical governance. During this event, Azerbaijani activists were savagely attacked by the police with many injured and arrested.

Note: This was outlined in our letter –  378/ 2006 on 31 August 2006

Since the May 2006

Court

Cases

5

And

6

The May 2006 Mass Protests swept throughout Southern Azerbaijan and its participants were some 2 million people from every walk of life it. This orchestrated national protest was a response to an officially sanctioned cartoon published in a daily a State-owned national daily newspaper, called Iran. Its contents were sharply pointed to undermining the national integrity of the Turkic nation of Southern Azerbaijan and any Turk in the world.

Mr. Leysanli, also took part in these protests on 27 May 2006 in his hometown, Erdebil. The charges brought against him were all arbitrary and his trials were held in kangaroo courts. The whole episode showed that the authorities in the Islamic Republic of Iran are in contempt of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and also they demonstrated that “anything goes in Iran” thanks to an underground network of collusions among different bodies of the Iranian authorities.

The mess created by the Iranian authorities against Mr. Leysanli in this episode was two court cases and after their finalization they are:

Court Case 5 (numbering is ours):

Charges:

1.      Creating public disorder

2.      Participating in illegal marches and gatherings for the purpose of causing social disorder all over Erdebil during the afternoon of Saturday 27 May 2006.

3.      Participating in intentional arson and destruction of state-owned properties.

4.      Encouraging members of the public to commit illegal activities on the aforesaid date which resulted in fire and destruction of approximately 66 private and state owned banks, Refah Supermarket and Traffic Police Station in Erdebil, causing damages to people’s vehicles, in particular to the vehicles carrying government number plates.

Sentence:

1.      Ten months to one year of imprisonment and fifty lashes for disturbing the peace, causing public disorder by encouraging others to behave in irrational ways on Saturday 27 May 2006

2.      A further sentence of six months of imprisonment for participating in destruction and burning of public and private properties.

For a detailed account of these events see Tables 3 and 4, below

 

Table 3:    The Log of Various Correspondences of DunAzHAK related to Mr. Abbas Leysanli on Court Cases 5 and 6

Ref: 378/ 2006 on 31 August 2006

 

This was lodged as a Complaint but we mean it to be Communication 1

Updates

Ref: 400/ 2006 on 18 October 2006   

Served as Update 1 – Appeal against Case 1

Ref: 403/2006 on 30 October 2006

Served as Update 2

Ref: 408/2006 on 1 November 2006

Acknowledged the imprisonment of Mr. Leysanli

Ref: 409/2006 on 5 November 2006

Served as Update 3

Ref: 430/2007 on 1 January 2007

Update 4

Ref: 432/2007 on 2 January 200

Update 5

Ref: 454/2007 on 15 May 2007

Update 6

Ref: 459/2007 on 23 July 2007

Update 7

Ref: 474/2007 on 21 December 2007

Update 8

Ref: 476/2007 on 29 December 2007

Update 9

Ref: 478/2008 on 13 January 2008

Update 10

Bulletins

Update 5 – Ref: 432/2007 on 2 January 2007 (also served as Bulletin 1)

Bulletin 2 – Ref: 435/2007 on 5 January 2007

Bulletin 3 – Ref: 436/2007 on 6 January 2007

Bulletin 4 – Ref: 439/2007 on 21 January 2007

Bulletin 5 – Ref: 441/2007 on 31 January 2007

Bulletin 6 – Ref: 442/2007 on 1 February 2007

 

Indirect Correspondences

Ref:  372/ 2006 on 28 August 2006

Ref:  365/ 2006 on 19 August 2006

Ref:  355/ 2006 on 28 July 2006

Ref:  353/ 2006 on 24 July 2006

Ref:  350/ 2006 on 18 July 2006

Ref:  338/ 2006 on 18 June 2006

Ref:  333/ 2006 on 8 June 2006

 

 

Table 4  The Ordeals Suffered by Mr. Leysanli in their Chronological Order During Court Cases 5-6

Date

Events

24 May 2006

A leaflet was distributed in Erdebil calling them to take part in a mass protest on 27 May 2006.

27 May 2006

He gave a moving speech to the mass protesters in Erdebil, where 200,000 people were participating and he called them for calm in their anti-apartheid movement.

31 May 2006

He gave a long telephone interview to GunAzTV and predicted that he would be imminently arrested.

3 June 2006

Was arrested after security agents broke into his home midnight and subjected him to violence in front of his young children and wife, confiscated his computers, poems, writings and personal belongings.

4 June 2006

Mr. Leysanli starts his hunger strike.

5 June 2006

The authorities shut down Mr. Leysanli’s business.

8 June 2006

Mrs. Ruqeyye Leysanli was threatened and was ordered not to campaigning for her husband.

9 June 2006

Mr. Leysanli refuses the intake of water on top of his hunger strike.

10 June 2006

He is banned from receiving any visitor (due to being tortured).

11 June 2006

Mr. Leysanli is forced fed by Intravenous (IV) Drips.

12 June 2006 to 14 June 2006

Statements issued or questions raised by various European parliamentarians including: Jonas Sjostedt and Eva-Britt Svensson in Sweeden, European Parliament and Amnesty International.

23 June 2006

Mr. Leysanli was transferred to a Secure unit of the Erdebil Prison.

27 June 2006

Mr. Leysanli smuggles a message out of prison on the occasion of the Babek Assembly:

“Freedom or Death, as I know of no other way.”

30 June 2006

Mr. Leysanli breaks his hunger strike after the insistence of friends and his family members.

3 July 2006

Mr. Leysanli resumes his hunger strike, as a protest against the behaviour of the prison authorities in mistreating the political prisoners of Southern Azerbaijan.

8 July 2006

After approximately 20 days of hunger strike, his physical conditions was reportedly grave; was then transferred for a secure unit but the prison authorities prevented him to be transferred to a hospital.

16 July 2006

Mr. Leysanli’s family has finally managed to visit him lately in the Erdebil Prison. His conditions were described as deeply worrying, as he was even unable to stand up or sit on a chair. He has been transferred to the hospital in Erdebil and being injected continually with IV drips after being on hunger strike for 35 days with a further 11 days he has even refused the intake of water/liquid. He is extremely pale; his vision is impaired; and due to his continuous hunger strikes, his digestion and kidney systems are extremely upset. His weight is now 85 kg, reduced by 30 kg within 46 days of hunger strike.

21 July 2006

A statement issued by 19 Members of the European Parliament (MEP), asking Iran to release the political prisoners of Southern Azerbaijan.

22 July 2006

The Message from Mr. Leysanli smuggled out of Prison:

“The purpose behind my hunger strike including my refusal for the intake of water is to convey the message of the nation of (Southern) Azerbaijan to the world – freedom. Should I die, then let me join the rank of those who pay the ultimate price of life for the nation of Azerbaijan.”

26 July 2006

Mr. Leysanli was taken to the trial court. He challenged all the charges against him and emphasised that he only advocates civil approaches and democratic means for the attainment of the national and human rights of Southern Azerbaijan and charges against him are false.

29 July 2006

Mrs. Ruqeyye Leysanli, the wife of Mr. Leysanli was finally allowed to visit her husband in the secure unit of the Erdebil Prison. She showed him a letter undersigned by prominent Southern Azerbaijani activists (including those from AzBilTop and ASMEK to break his hunger strike. Finally, Mr. Leysanli obliged to the delight of the nation.

2 Sept 2006

A statement by Mrs. Ruqeyye Leysanli:

1.        “I visited my husabnd today in the morning. He is maltreated and kept with other sick inmates; despite his protested to this situation to the authorities nobody was listening.”

2.       Mrs. Leysanli: “today I received a letter from from the court in Keleyber containing the sentence passed to my husband. According to this sentence he is sentenced for one year of imprisonment for taking part in the Babek Assemmbly on June 2005.”

 

3 Sept 2006

Tried in the Revolutionary Court in Tebriz. He was arrested together with a number of other activists on 3 August 2005 when commemorating the Constitution Day last year. The detainees on that occasion were all released by meeting bails except Hojjet-ul-islam Ezimi Qedim and after passage of so much time Mr. Leysanli was summoned to the court while in detention.

7 Sept 2006

The dossier related to the May 2006 Mass Protests was referred to the Penal Court No. 105 of the General Penal Court of the province of Erdebil. Mr. Feqihi, the lawyer defending Mr. Leysanli, gave a statement to the reporter of ISNA saying that his client is accused of inciting riot and wrecking public places and also helping with arson. Reportedly he attended the above court to study the file of his client and was expecting to hear the date for the trial.

26 Sep 2006

The nation of Southern Azerbaijan was jubilant for the release on bail (amount: 80 million Riyal, equivalent to $8000) of the leader of the national movement of Southern Azerbaijan at 2.00 p.m. by meeting. This was rather unexpected and was attributed to the ongoing international campaign.

27 Sept 2006 issued later

The sentence for the May 2006 Mass Protests was issued:

 

Charges:

1.       Creating public disorder

2.       Participating in illegal marches and gatherings for the purpose of causing social disorder all over Erdebil during the afternoon of Saturday 27 May 2006.

3.       Participating in intentional arson and destruction of state-owned properties.

4.       Encouraging members of the public to commit illegal activities on the aforesaid date which resulted in fire and destruction of approximately 66 private and state owned banks, Refah Supermarket and Traffic Police Station in Erdebil, causing damages to people’s vehicles, in particular to the vehicles carrying government number plates.

 

Sentence:

1.       Ten months of imprisonment and fifty lashes for disturbing the peace, causing public disorder by encouraging others to behave in irrational ways on Saturday 27 May 2006

2.       A further sentence of six months of imprisonment for participating in destruction and burning of public and private properties.

20? Oct 2006

Launched the appeal against the sentence

31 Oct 2006

Rearrested

28 Dec. 2006

Two open letters issued to the Public Prosecutor in Erdebil and to the Prison authority of Erdebil, giving them notice on the intended hunger strike as a last resort for safeguarding him human rights

31 Dec. 2006

The start of the second round of hunger strike (the first round was last year for 56 days (4 June – 29 July 2006). He is believed to be transferred into a solitary confinement in relation to his hunger strike

2 Jan. 2007

Bulletin 1 by DunAzHAK: http://www.dunazhak.org/discriptinglish432.htm

3 Jan. 2007

The Open Letters by Mr. Leysanli was published in the Internet

5 Jan. 2007

Bulletin 2 by DunAzHAK and the English translation of the Open Letters, see: http://www.dunazhak.org/discriptinglish435.htm

6 Jan. 2007

Bulletin 3 by DunAzHAK on the latest conditions of Mr. Leysanli and his family

31 Jan 2007

Some 50 prominent Southern Azerbaijani activists gathered in front of Erdebil prison and the authorities gave permission to 15  of them to visit Mr. Leysanli who was in the near death condition. The activists conveyed the message of the nation and asked him to break his hunger strike. He accepted it at the brink of death to the relief of the nation of Azerbaijan. Later the prison authorities resumed their tyrannical measures by keeping in cold cells and depriving him from the right of leave.

May 2007

He produced another monumental letter from the prison addressing the nation of Azerbaijan as inviting them to be firm on the occasion of the Anniversary of the May 2006 Mass Protests

July 2007

Savalan Sesi managed to interview him while he was in the prison and he defiantly maintained that the charges brought against him were arbitrary. Whilst the prison authorities did nothing by way of providing him medical care for his excruciating pains but instead threatened him in various ways including exiling him.

Dec. 2007

We warned that the Iranian authorities were planning to harm Mr. Leysanli while in their charge in the prison.

28 Dec. 2007

We provided details on the plan the Iranian authorities were going to go ahead with their heinous act of flogging

29 Dec. 2007

We provided with an account of the events on the intention of the authority to inflict bodily harm on Mr. Leysanli by the heinous act of flogging and how he rebuffed the authorities owing to his formidable personality.

30 Dec. 2007

He was unexpectedly transferred from Erdebil prison to Eher prison.

5 March 2008

A special Farsi-speaking Unit from Yazd arrived to Eher prison and using physical violence deported Mr. Leysanli to the central Yazd prison, 2000Km away.

6 March 2008

The deportation of Mr. Leysanli is complete. At 21.00 p.m. he called his home in Erdebil and confirmed that he was in Yazd prison and resorting to a hunger strike.

17 March  2008

Amnesty International issues an Urgent Action (MDE13/050/2008) and information that the Iranian authorities will be flogging Mr. Leysanli in the central Yazd prison.

21 March 2008

After the appeal of prominent activists, Mr. Leysanli accepts them and breaks his hunger strike. However there is concern on his health.

Azərbaijani Turkic

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