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Written declaration No. 685 | Doc. 14936 | 28 June 2019

Azerbaijani hostages Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev held in the occupied Azerbaijani lands should be immediately and unconditionally released

Signatories: Mr Samad SEYIDOV, Azerbaijan, EC ; Ms Ulviyye AGHAYEVA, Azerbaijan, FDG ; Mr Kamil AYDIN, Turkey, NR ; Mr Yunus EMRE, Turkey, SOC ; Ms Sevinj FATALIYEVA, Azerbaijan, EC ; Mr Sabir HAJIYEV, Azerbaijan, SOC ; Mr Nagif HAMZAYEV, Azerbaijan, FDG ; Mr Elshad HASANOV, Azerbaijan, FDG ; Mr Rafael HUSEYNOV, Azerbaijan, ALDE ; Mr Akif Çağatay KILIÇ, Turkey, NR ; Mr Asim MOLLAZADE, Azerbaijan, EC ; Mr Marco NICOLINI, San Marino, UEL ; Ms Ganira PASHAYEVA, Azerbaijan, FDG ; Ms Maria RIZZOTTI, Italy, EPP/CD ; Mr Ali ŞAHİN, Turkey, NR ; Mr Aleksandar ŠEŠELJ, Serbia, FDG ; Mr Yıldırım Tuğrul TÜRKEŞ, Turkey, NR ; Ms Serap YAŞAR, Turkey, NR ; Mr Mustafa YENEROĞLU, Turkey, FDG ; Ms Zeynep YILDIZ, Turkey, FDG ; Mr Roger ZAVOLI, San Marino, FDG

This written declaration commits only those who have signed it.

We, the undersigned, declare the following:

11 July 2019 will mark five years since the Azerbaijani civilians Mr Dilgam Asgarov and Mr Shahbaz Guliyev were taken hostage while visiting the graves of their relatives in the occupied Kalbajar region of Azerbaijan. They represent a community of hundreds of thousands of Azerbaijanis forcibly displaced from their native lands as a result of the Armenia-Azerbaijan Nagorno-Karabakh conflict.

We are deeply concerned that all calls to release them have been rejected so far.

We acknowledge the fact that in 2015 their application was lodged with the European Court of Human Rights.

As we were reminded at the event hosted by the delegation of Azerbaijan to the Parliamentary Assembly on 25 June, the humanitarian case of Mr Asgarov and Mr Guliyev deserves a strong reaction from the international community to put an end to their life-threatening desperate situation.

We therefore urge the Assembly, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe and the Commissioner for Human Rights to seize this matter to ensure their immediate and unconditional release, in order to restore their violated rights.

We also look forward to seeing the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights concerning their case.