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Ombudswoman Apparatus Officials Meet with Convicts on Hunger-Strike

Society Materials 30 March 2007 19:56

Azerbaijan, Baku / Т corr. S. Ilhamghizi / Elmira Suleymanova, the Plenipotentiary on Human Rights (Ombudswoman) has told Trend that the officials from the Ombudswoman Apparatus met with the 10 convicts, which had been sentenced to life-term imprisonment and recently have gone on hunger-strike in the Gobustan Closed Prison.

Mrs. Suleymanova has said that today she has sent her representatives to the Prison, then the officials will report her about the situation with the convicts on hunger-strike.

The veto for the death sentence in Azerbaijan was imposed in 1993 and officially repealed in 1998. In those years, a 15-year imprisonment was the harshest punishment. Due to it, the convicts sentenced to life-term imprisonment claimed that they had suffered the unjustice sentence. They hope that their sentences should be replaced to 15- year imprisonment. "I have applied to the Constitutional Court to ascertain if the convicts' demands correspond to the Constitution or not. The Court replied that the cases of the convicts would be considered individually and then the decisions would be made," said Mrs. Suleymanova.

The convicts seek to attract the public attention by means of the hunger-strike. "The convicts will be provided with the assistance and I believe they will stop their doing," Mrs. Suleymanova added. The Azerbaijani Ombudswoman noted that due to the intercession of the Apparatus, the sentences of two convicts sentenced to life imprisonment were replaiced by 25 years.

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