Time in Yerevan: 11:07:36,   23 January

Georgian president receives Afgan Mukhtarli’s spouse

YEREVAN, JUNE 27, ARMENPRESS. Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili has announced that he is interested in the case of journalist, human rights activist Afgan Mukhtarli, who has been abducted in Georgia and taken to Azerbaijan. “Armenpress” reports, citing apsny.ge, spouse of the journalist Leyla Mustafayeva told the reporters after meeting with Giorgi Margvelashvili.

According to her, the president has mentioned that he keeps control of the situation.

“The Georgian president adequately reacted to this case. I think it’s the correct position. He affirmed that position”, Mustafayeva said.

Afghan Mukhtarli is a known critic of the Azerbaijani authorities’ policies. Since 2015, he was forced to settle in Tbilisi. He disappeared two days ago, and later appeared in Baku and was jailed.

He said that he was kidnapped from downtown Tbilisi by unknown people wearing civilian clothing, who were speaking Georgian. He was forced into a car and taken out of Georgia, heavily battered, blindfolded and taken to another vehicle. He was then forced to a third vehicle, already on the Azerbaijani border, where he heard the kidnappers talk in Azerbaijani. The kidnappers framed him by putting a large amount of cash in his pocket, and now he is charged with smuggling and illegal border crossing. His attorney has already met him, and said that his client has bruised on his face.

Afghan told his attorney that he has severe pain in the chest area, presumably fractured ribs.

The lawyer of the journalist has met with his client and told that there are traces of violence on his face.

Georgian authorities have expressed concern over the abduction of the journalist.

On June 27 the Prosecutor-General of Georgia announced they are waiting for the response of Azerbaijani law enforcement bodies. He added that after receiving relevant details and documents the Georgian side will make adequate legal decisions and will take measures.

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