Azerbaijan, Baku, Nov. 3 / Trend K.Zarbaliyeva/
The Azerbaijani Justice Ministry sent an inquiry to the Iranian government after the arrest of an Azerbaijani laser specialist in Iran, Justice Ministry Spokesman Aydin Agazade told Trend today.
"This issue is under the ministry's control," he said. "I hope Iran will answer soon."
Rashid Aliyev, who is the head engineer and physicist at the Biological Laboratory of the Institute for Physical Problems at Baku State University, worked with the Iranian Sazan Elektronics Industry company from 2006-2008.
The company's head repeatedly asked the scientist to move to Iran during their activities. However, Aliyev refused the proposal and returned to Azerbaijan. After numerous requests by company director Abbas Eftekhari, Aliyev returned to Iran for a short period on Oct.5. He was arrested the following day for alleged visa problems.
"Aliyev's arrest has no relation to the contract signed between our firm and Baku State University," Eftekhari told Trend earlier.
Aliyev is being held at the Evin Jail's Fifth Building.
Aliyev suspended his scientific activity in the private sector when he voluntarily went to serve in the army at age 38. He installed special purpose communications systems until 1999 and later organized and conducted laser technology tests for the military.
Aliyev was also involved in overhauling the border patrol.
Although the Azerbaijani Foreign Ministry has sent several notices to the Iranian Foreign Ministry asking for the scientist's release, no response has been made.
Meanwhile, Eftekhari believes that Aliyev was arrested for security issues.
"He was arrested for security issues and charged with espionage," Eftekhari said.
Committee for the Protection of Scientist Rights Chairman Soltanhamid Malikov was quick to counter the company director's statement in a conversation with Trend .
"If he was really arrested on charges of espionage, Iran would not have allowed him earlier to return to Azerbaijan when his contract expired," he said. "Further, Iran would have spread an official statement about the charges when he was in the country."
Malikov said he will meet with new Azerbaijani Ambassador to Iran Javanshir Akhundov and ask him to assist in facilitating the scientist's release.
The Iranian Embassy in Azerbaijan has not yet reported on this issue.
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