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Azerbaijan

    January 14, 2013

    A thorough, independent investigation is needed into what appears to have been an orchestrated attack on Azerbaijani opposition presidential candidate Isa Gambar on the campaign trail, Amnesty International said.

    According to Gambar’s Musavat Party, he was on his way to campaign in the southern coastal city of Lenkoran on Sunday when 10 vehicles attempted to block his convoy at the city’s entrance.

    A Musavat spokesperson told Amnesty International that a crowd of more than 100 people then pelted the candidate’s convoy with rocks and eggs taken from nearby trucks, smashing the car windows. Nine people in Gambar’s entourage were injured including several who were punched and kicked and Musavat Party deputy leader Gulagha Aslanli, who had his foot run over by a car.

    During the ambush, a Musavat Party photographer, Mehman Karimov, was briefly detained for questioning by men in plainclothes who appeared to be directing the crowd. He was released after they returned his camera.

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