Updated at 18:49,15-10-2021

Azerbaijan’s president thanks Lukashenka for extraditing blogger Lapshin

belsat.eu, photo by Trand News Agency

Azerbaijan’s president thanks Lukashenka for extraditing blogger Lapshin
The handcuffed blogger
Azerbaijan’s president Ilham Aliyev made a phone call to his Belarusian counterpart Alyaksandr Lukashenka and extended gratitude for extraditing blogger Alexander Lapshin.

President Aliyev described this step as demonstrating a fair position and compliance with the rule of law and international conventions, as well as a manifestation of friendly and strategic partnership between Azerbaijan and Belarus.

Blogger Alexander Lapshin was taken to Baku by special plane from Minsk on February, 7.

According to trend.az, Mr Lapshin was accompanied by employees of Azerbaijan State Security Service and armed, masked men, bloggers hands were handcuffed.

Alexander Lapshin is a well-known Russian-language blogger, citizen of Russia and Israel. In Minsk, the foreigner was detained in December last year at the request of Azerbaijan.

Deputy Prosecutor General of Belarus Alyaksei Stuk ordered the extradition of the blogger into the Republic of Azerbaijan on 17 January 2017. Lapshin was on the black list of this country already in 2011.

Lapshin is accused of violating the laws of the Azerbaijan state border and passports in April 2011 and October 2012. Lapshin is now facing up to eight years in prison for anti-constitutional calls and illegal entry into Azerbaijan.

Armenia’s response

Wednesday’s meeting of the Armenian parliament started with a number of loud statements and claims in the wake of Lapshin’s extradition by Belarus, the newspaper Novosti-Armenia reports.

“I think that the Armenian Foreign Ministry should withdraw its ambassador from Belarus, and take the toughest political and diplomatic measures towards Minsk as a response,” opposition MP Nikol Pashinyan says.

Another opposition MP, Grant Bagratsyan, made it clear that there were many opportunities of exerting pressure on Minsk, in particular, demanding to exclude Belarus from the CSTO.