Azeri secret services used Georgian to trap young opposition leader

Azeri secret services used Georgian to trap young opposition leader – daily

Azadliq, Baku
4 Sep 05

Azerbaijani opposition daily Azadliq has said Georgian citizen Merabi
Dzhibutia, who was detained recently for illegally trespassing the
Georgian-Azerbaijani border, is allegedly an Azerbaijani special
services agent.

The special services used Dzhibutia to “trap” Azerbaijani opposition
youth leader Ruslan Basirli, Azadliq said.

Azerbaijani State Border Service identified Dzhibutia on 29 August
as the person who had allegedly mediated a meeting between Basirli
and Armenian secret services in Tbilisi in July. Ruslan Basirli,
head of the Yeni Fikir (New Thought) youth movement, was arrested on
4 August on charges of cooperation with the Armenian secret services
and plans to overthrow the government.

Azadliq questioned reasons why Dzhibutia had attempted to cross over
to Azerbaijan. “If he represented the Armenian intelligence services,
as the Azerbaijani authorities claim, then why did not he flee to
Armenia? The reason is clear. When you scare a dog, it runs to its
master,” the daily said.

The report also noted that although Dzhibutia was detained on 26
August, information about his arrest was published on 29 August. It
recalled that the head of the Georgian Foreign Intelligence Service,
Batu Kutelia, visited Azerbaijan on the same day.

“It is quite possible that Mr Kutelia had to visit Baku because he
knew that Dzhibutia had been taken to Azerbaijan. The Azerbaijani
authorities were already unable to hide the cat in a bag and had to
make public his arrest,” Azadliq said.

The daily also noted the delay in publishing Dzhibutia’s evidence to
the investigation. It took Azerbaijani investigators almost a week
to show him on pro-government TV channels giving evidence. Merabi
had to fill gaps in the Basirli case, Azadliq said.