Azerbaijan: ICJ intervenes before European Court of Human Rights in defence of harassed lawyers and civil society

The ICJ made submissions today to the European Court of Human Rights in support of the right of association of Azerbaijan’s lawyers representing applicants before the Court and highlighting the situation of harassment of the legal profession in the country.

The ICJ intervened today in the cases of Democracy and Human Rights Resource Centre v. Azerbaijan and Mustafayev and Democracy and Human Rights Resource Centre v. Azerbaijan. 

In these cases, lawyer Asabali Mustafayev and its NGO challenged the compliance of the freezing of their assets and criminal proceedings for financial offences as arbitrary interferences with their work as human rights defenders and in representation of clients before the European Court of Human Rights itself.

The ICJ has intervened to highlight the case-law regarding the right to individual application before the Court under article 34 ECHR and its application to the work of lawyers and legal NGOs.

It further examined the systemic practice in Azerbaijan of harassment of lawyers and of NGOs established by lawyers for the purpose of providing legal advice or representation, including representation of applicants before the European Court of Human Rights.

Finally, the ICJ analyzed the implications of such practices with regard to the State’s obligations under article 18 ECHR read together with article 11 ECHR.

Azerbaijan-icj-DHRRC&other-Advocacy-legal submission-2018-ENG (download the submission)

“Defenseless Defenders: Systemic Problems in the Legal Profession of Azerbaijan” – ICJ report in Azeri, Russian and English.

Question to the parties:

AdvocacyCasesLegal submissions