The editors of the Index on Censorship Freedom of Expression Award-winning newspaper Azadliq have launched a letter-writing campaign to journalist Seymur Hezi, who is in prison.
The letters will be printed out and sent to Penitentiary No. 17 where Hezi is detained.
Rahim Haciyev, acting editor of Azadliq newspaper, said Hezi’s health is suffering due to the prison conditions but he continues to write about the country’s recent political history.
Hezi was sentenced five years in prison in 2015 for “aggravated hooliganism”, according to Azadlıq Radiosu.
He was previously charged with disorderly conduct in 2014 after an altercation where the journalist defended himself from a physical assault and harassment, according to his lawyers.
The reason for Hezi’s imprisonment is seen as politically influenced due to his public activities. Haciyev said Hezi published critical articles of the authorities in the newspaper, along with critiques in his online TV broadcast “Azerbaijani Hour”.
The journalist’s family and lawyers say that his sentencing was politically motivated and biased.