On September 5, Azerbaijan’s General Prosecutor’s Office announced updates on a renewed investigation of the “Tartar case” – the country’s most notorious torture case in years.
The “Tartar case”, which derives its name from a district in central Azerbaijan, dates back to May-June 2017, when hundreds of Azerbaijani soldiers and officers were tortured, at least 11 killed, on an allegation that they worked for the Armenian army. None of the survivors, including 25 that are still in prison on espionage charges, accept the allegation. For four years, the authorities have kept quiet about the rumors of massive torture until December last year when they launched an investigative group.
According to the new statement, 288 more people have been recognized by the investigation as victims of the mass torture, thus bringing the total number of victims to 405. Besides, since the investigation was launched, 12 people were arrested on charges of torture and abuse of power, 4 were exempted from preventive measures as they are serving jail time for other crimes, and a search order was given for one person.
In addition, arrest orders issued for 19 people charged with crimes against army were fully nulled on bases of exoneration (and partially for 7 more).
Most importantly, the General Prosecutor’s Office directed the cases of 19 people who were arrested on treason charges to the Supreme Court to reconsider their verdict.