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Police Arrested PFPA Activist On Drug Charges

February 7, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Jabbar Savalan (right) with a friend, also a youth activist.

BAKU. February 7, 2011: On February 5, the Sumgayit Police Department arrested Jabbar Savalan, youth activist of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan (PFPA). Police claims there were 0.17 grams of controlled substance in Jabbar’s pocket. The 19-year-old youth activist was accused of drug possession with the intent to sell it. However, Abulfaz Gurbanli, the chairman of the youth organization of the PFPA, said the police planted the drugs in Jabbar’s pocket just to arrest the opposition youth activist for his political activism.

Abulfaz Gurbanli says after the confrontation that took place between the police and PFPA youth during the 21st anniversary of January 20 events, Click here for video Jabbar Savalan was under the police surveillance.

“On 5 February, he was with us at the Youth Committee Conference. Later we watched a film at the Norwegian Human Rights House, and he went home to Sumgayit. We heard early this morning that he has been arrested, as narcotics were planted in his pocket. He was politically active; he was always together with us [the youth committee –ed.]. His arrest on drug possession charges is completely ridiculous. Jabbar Savalan was a new party member and was arrested due to his political activism. He is a fourth year student at the Sumgayit State University, majoring in History.”
Jabbar Savalan’s mother says the police broke into their apartment in Sumgayit at 4 AM on February 6, searching for something and then informing them that Jabbar Savalan was arrested on drug charges.

Jabbar Savalan receiving his PFPA membership card from the PFPA chairman Ali Karimli. November 2010.

Jabbar Savalan receiving his PFPA membership card from the PFPA chairman Ali Karimli. November 2010.


Jabbar Savalan joined the PFPA in November 2010. He was very active in the youth work of the opposition party and the latest example of his activism was his Facebook message posted on February 4 – one day before his arrest: “I am very serious, friends. It is time to leave the Facebook and go to streets. I am talking about the time and location of the protest activity. Let us organize a Day of Wrath at Freedom Square on February 11 at 12:00. If you have any other suggestions, let me know.” This was posted at the Facebook page of Ictimai Palata (Public Chamber) the Facebook listing of the Azeri opposition.
Given the present anxiety of the Azerbaijani government over the Arab revolutions, it is quite possible that the triggering motive for this blatant arrest of a youth activist was this Facebook call on the opposition activists (Azerireport).

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