MP: Council of Europe should be concerned about occupied Azerbaijani lands’ liberation rather than Safarov’s release

Photo: MP: Council of Europe should be concerned about occupied Azerbaijani lands’ liberation rather than Safarov’s release / Nagorno-karabakh conflict

Azerbaijan, Baku, Sept. 7 / Trend /

The Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights on the eve of the last meeting of the autumn session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) in Paris on Thursday included the issue of the release of Azerbaijani officer Ramil Safarov in the agenda along with discussion of other important issues and reports.

A member of the Azerbaijani delegation Rafael Huseynov spoke during the discussion of Safarov's extradition and pardon. The Azerbaijani MP responded to an unfounded accusation by some committee members, including Armenian MP Rustamyan.

"I welcome the discussion by the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the case relating to Azerbaijani officer Ramil Safarov. This problem is directly related to the aggression of Armenia against Azerbaijan, occupation of 20 per cent of Azerbaijan with nearly one million people who became refugees and internally displaced immigrants, the loss of thousands of lives, people maimed for life and to the aggressive policy of Armenia, which has continued for over 20 years. Discussing Safarov's issue, we also need to discuss the details of this conflict. Every time opening this discussion, you will allow us to once again draw attention to this problem," Huseynov said.

He noted that the case of Ramil Safarov is directly related to the war of conquest and should be seen as one of the consequences of the conflict and investigated in the context of the Armenian-Azerbaijani conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh. Because Safarov by origin is also from the Azerbaijani region which is still under Armenian occupation, his family's relatives for many years had to live the life of refugees and a young relative of Ramil Safarov was killed during the occupation. In light of these events it is necessary to understand the psychological state of mind of the young officer.

"It should also be noted that the Azerbaijani officer committed this act not in a civil situation, but during military training in Hungary. Also this did not happen suddenly, but amid emotional stress after a series of insults from colleagues from Armenia against Azerbaijan, the Azerbaijani flag and the family of Ramil Safarov.

"Of course every death is a tragedy and we do not approve of this murder, but we cannot lose sight of the conditions under which the crime was committed. Penalty for each crime has its natural limits. Unfortunately after pressure and a stir raised by the Armenian lobby in Hungary, the court sentenced Safarov to a very severe punishment - life imprisonment.

"On July 22, 2011, after a double bombing that killed 77 people committed by a citizen of Norway, Anders Breivik, the latter was sentenced to 21 years, while Safarov for acts committed in the heat of passion - to life imprisonment. This, of course, is an unfair punishment," the MP said.

Huseynov said that the extradition of Ramil Safarov to Azerbaijan was conducted in full compliance with the European Convention on Transfer of Sentences Persons and the presidential decree to pardon Safarov is in accordance with the Constitution and laws of the country. In other words, it was done within the law and any objections to these actions are nothing more than emotion and will not bring any results.

Azerbaijani officer Ramil Safarov, who was convicted in Hungary, returned to Azerbaijan on Aug. 31. The same day, under an order of the head of state, he was pardoned.

Ramil Safarov was born on August 25, 1977 in the Jabrail region of Azerbaijan. Safarov 34, who participated in NATO exercises in 2004 in Hungary, was charged with the murder of Armenian officer Gurgen Margaryan, who insulted the Azerbaijani flag. As the result of the verdict by the Budapest court, Safarov was sentenced to life imprisonment without the right of pardon during 30 years.

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