|Co-chairman of ReAl movement|
December 25, 2008
June 14, 1970 |
|Political party||ReAl, Republican Alternative|
|Alma mater||Lomonosov Moscow State University, Central European University|
Ilgar Mammadov (Azerbaijani: İlqar Məmmədov) (born June 14, 1970) is an opposition politician in Azerbaijan, and one of the leaders of the Republicanist Alternative Movement. Mammadov was considered a likely candidate for the Presidential elections in October 2013, but was arrested in February 2013, prior to the race, in a move that was widely seen as politically motivated.
In March 2014, Mammadov was sentenced to 7 years in jail. He currently remains in jail, in spite of extensive international protests against his arrest and sentence, and a finding by the European Court of Human Rights in his favor.
Education & Professional Experience
Ilgar Mammadov received degrees in political science from Lomonosov Moscow State University in 1993, and in political economy from Central European University in 1997. Mammadov worked with a number of national and international organizations, including as an analyst for the International Crisis Group, and as the Director of the Council of Europe School of Political Studies in Baku.
Mammadov's previous political affiliation was with the National Independence Party where he served as Deputy Chairman between 1998 and 2003. The National Independence Party was a center-right party, a member of the International Democrat Union alongside with French UMP, German CDU, British Conservatives, and others. He left the party in 2003 due to growing policy disagreements.
Mammadov was banned from TV and radio after his 19 March 2009 Republicanist speech on ANS TV live air. He had protested against the conduct of the 18 March 2009 referendum that removed term limits from the President's office, and thus permitted, in principle, a President for life.
Ilgar is a regular contributor to leading Azerbaijani media and international conferences on politics, democratization, geopolitics, and conflict resolution. His blog  was the first political online diary in the country.
Arrest & Imprisonment
Mammadov was arrested on February 23, 2013, after traveling to Ismayilli, a town in Northern Azerbaijan in which there had been civil disturbance, following alleged repression by the local governor. He subsequently was sentenced to seven years imprisonment, in March 2014.
A number of countries and organizations have protested against this sentencing. The US State Department noted "significant irregularities in witness testimony and court proceedings. Our observations led to the conclusion that the verdicts were not based on the evidence and were politically motivated."  The Foreign Office of the United Kingdom also expressed concern, saying that they were "troubled by a number of aspects of the conduct of the trial which reinforce the impression that the verdicts were politically motivated." Similar statements were released by France, the European Union and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. The Natural Resource Governance Institute, a think tanks, also condemned the sentence.
On May 22, 2014, the European Court of Human Rights found that the authorities in Azerbaijan had violated a number of basic human rights provisions in arresting and sentencing Mammadov. The court ordered Azerbaijan to pay compensation to Mammadov. At this point, Mammadov still remains in a jail in Sheki, about 280 km from his family.
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- British Embassy Baku. "Foreign Office expresses concern at conduct of trial & sentencing of Azerbaijani opposition leaders Ilgar Mammadov and Tofiq Yagublu". UK Government Website. Retrieved 14 September 2014.|date=March 24, 2014}
- France Diplomatie. "Azerbaijan – Sentencing of Ilgar Mammadov (March 17, 2014)". French Government Website. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
- Spokesperson of EU High Representative Catherine Ashton and Commissioner Štefan Füle (March 20, 2014). "On the sentencing of Ilgar Mammadov and Tofiq Yaqublu on charges of staging riots in Ismayili, Azerbaijan". Retrieved 14 September 2014.
- Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) co-rapporteurs. "Azerbaijan: concern at announcement of jail sentence on two opposition politician". Council of Europe. p. 21 March 2014. Retrieved 14 September 2014.
- Natural Resource Governance Institute. "Statement on Sentencing of Ilgar Mammadov in Azerbaijan". Retrieved 14 September 2014.
- Human Rights Europe (May 22, 2014). "Court: Arrest and detention of Azerbaijan opposition politician and blogger Ilgar Mammadov was unjustified". Retrieved 14 September 2014.