August 14th, 2014, Prague – Music bands MIG 21, Už jsme doma and the legendary Plastic People of the Universe are calling for release of political prisoners in Azerbaijan. All three bands will present this appeal at Trutnov Open Air festival starting today. All festival visitors will have a chance to join this appeal for releasing Intigam Aliyev and Rasul Jafarov, the recently arrested human rights activists, at NESEHNUTÍ info stand at the Trutnov festival. Besides, anyone can support the appeal on the website www.cestainiciativy.cz/dopis.
‘Czech underground expresses its support to the arrested dissidents in Azerbaijan also because this never ending injustice is a dangerous reminder of the 1970s in Czechoslovakia. We do not want a political claque! Neither in Prague nor in Baku’, wrote The Plastic People of the Universe to People in Need.
MIG 21 stepped in with a similar statement: ‘We are against Azerbaijani dictator imprisoning local people only because they were not afraid to express their critical opinion and protect the freedom of others. Like the recently arrested Rasul Jafarov. Rasul is one of the most courageous human rights defenders in Azerbaijan but he will be celebrating his thirtieth birthday in prison this Sunday. Support Rasul and other political prisoners in Azerbaijan at NESEHNUTÍ stand where you can send them a postcard or a book to prison’, says MIG 21. [1, 2]
Už jsme doma band added: ‘We appeal to EU governments including our own government to help stop this abuse by all possible means, and remedy the crimes already committed. The world is too small for ignoring such things; some time ago, we used to be the ones receiving help – let us now send this torch of solidarity further, to those who need help today’. 
Intigam Aliyev, a respected Azerbaijani lawyer and human rights defender, explains the reasons for his imprisonment the following way: ‘My arrest was a part of a larger political plan for silencing and total destruction of independent organizations in Azerbaijan. It was no accident that other human rights defenders were arrested in the last few months, and are facing similar charges as mine’. Intigam Aliyev published his statement from the prison cell via his attorney. [4, 5]
NGOs confirm that many trials with those who criticize the regime have a clearly similar pattern. ‘Both dissidents are facing unjust punishment in the form of many years in prison. A number of other people have met a similar fate in Azerbaijan; local organizations estimate that the number of political prisoners has reached one hundred and forty’, says Adéla Pospíchalová from People in Need. ‘It is sad that those who were talking about persecutions and informed the world about political prisoners have themselves become political prisoners’, added Petra Havlíková from NESEHNUTÍ.
The appeal for release will be available at Eurotrialog Mikulov festival which also lent its support. Už jsme doma and Plastic People of the Universe will be performing at the festival .
Both People in Need and NESEHNUTÍ have brought the issue of political prisoners in Azerbaijan into the spotlight – last time so during the visit of President of Azerbaijan in Prague .
Adéla Pospíchalová, People in Need, email@example.com, tel.: 777 787 968
Petra Havlíková, NESEHNUTÍ, firstname.lastname@example.org, tel.: 732 854 435
 Several initiatives for their support appeared soon after important human rights defenders Intigam Aliyev and Rasul Jafarov were arrested and charged with serious criminal offenses. Among other, the initiatives organize sending books to prison.
Books for Rasul – Birthday in Prison (Facebook action):
 Beside international human rights organizations, European Commissioner Štefan Füle expressed his grave concerns about the arrest of Rasul Dzhafarov in his statement several days ago.
Azerbaijan: EU concerned by further arrests of human rights activists:
 The full statement by Už jsme doma band:
Having personal experience with suppression of the freedom of speech and expression dating from the beginning of the band’s activities, Už jsme doma strongly protests against the most recent example of abuse of power committed by the Azerbaijani regime, i.e. the arrest of Intigam Aliyev, as well as against imprisonment and arrests of other political opponents and human rights defenders in Azerbaijan. ‘We appeal to EU governments including our own government to help stop this abuse by all possible means, and remedy the crimes already committed. We appeal to citizens of our country who care for the fate of Azerbaijani activists to join this protest thus helping to create constant international pressure on the uncontrolled authorities in Azerbaijan. The world is too small for ignoring such things; some time ago, we used to be the ones receiving help – let us now send this torch of solidarity further, to those who need help today’.
 In 2013, Intigam Aliyev personally received the Homo Homini award from Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs in Prague; the award was granted to him by People in Need for personal courage and extraordinary commitment in defending hundreds of cases of violations of human rights.
 Homo Homini award winner arrested in Azerbaijan
 Ask also about political prisoners, NGOs appealed to President Zeman