By Rashid Shirinov
More than three years have passed since two Azerbaijanis Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev were captured by the Armenian armed forces while visiting their native places and graves of the loved ones in the occupied Azerbaijani Kalbajar region. Azerbaijan continues efforts to provide justice and to free the hostages.
"An appeal is sent to international organizations for release of Azerbaijani hostages Dilgam Asgarov and Shahbaz Guliyev, and work on this is underway," Eldar Samadov, deputy head of the work group of Azerbaijan’s State Commission for Prisoners of War, Hostages and Missing Persons, told reporters in Baku on November 28.
“Asgarov and Guliyev have not been released due to Armenia’s non-constructive and inhuman position,” he said, expressing hope that under President Ilham Aliyev’s leadership, it would be possible to release the hostages.
The two Azerbaijanis were detained by Armenian armed forces in July 2014, while the third captured Azerbaijani Hasan Hasanov was murdered. Later, Asgarov and Guliyev were illegally judged by the unrecognized courts of a separatist regime in Nagorno-Karabakh. Following an expedited “judicial process” in December 2015, Asgarov was sentenced to life imprisonment and Guliyev to 22 years.
Azerbaijan’s State Committee on Affairs of Refugees and IDPs, the State Commission on Prisoners of War, Hostages and Missing Persons and other agencies have repeatedly urged international organizations, including the International Committee of the Red Cross, to assist in release of Guliyev and Asgarov, but the problem remains topical yet.
Rashid Shirinov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @RashidShirinov
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