State Committee comments on incident between police officers and religious men in Baku

Baku: Azerbaijan’s State Committee for Work with Religious Organizations has released a statement about the incident between police officers and religious men in Baku’s Sabunchu district on Nov.5.

Elchin Gasimov, who is introduced as the deputy chairman of the managerial staff of the unregistered Muslim Unity Movement, was detained by police officers of Sabubchu district police department on November 5 as he committed acts of hooliganism, the committee’s deputy chairman Elchin Gasimov told APA.

“A group of persons, protesting Elchin Gasimov’s detention, attempted to disrupt public order outside the police department. As a result, those who resisted the police officers were also detained as they committed acts of hooliganism. Elchin Gasimov and others are not official religious figures nor are they members of religious communities. And the Caucasian Muslims Office and the State Committee of Azerbaijan for Work with Religious Organizations have never received such a request from them. They are not officially authorized to perform religious rites in places of worship. However, they have attempted to disrupt public order several times under the guise of performing spiritual rites. They attempted to give political messages under the veil of religion. Although concernded state bodies have repeatedly warned them, they continued the illegal actions. Traditional Islamic values are being protected in our country and there is no obstacle for performance of religious rites”, said the statement.

On Nov.5, a group of believers gathered outside the administrative building of Sabunchu District Police Department in Bakikhanov settlement protesting against deputy chairman of the Muslim Unity Movement Elchin Gasimli’s being detained by the police. Demanding release of Gasimli, the persons ignored the police when they ordered to get away from the area. As a result, there was a confrontation between police and believers. Several police officers injured and some believers were detained.

SOURCE: AZERI-PRESS NEWS AGENCY

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