JANUARY 28, 2016
After 11 months in jail, Irina Zakharchenko and Valida Jabrayilova were released on January 28, 2016. Judge Akram Gahramanov convicted them and imposed heavy fines (7,000 manat, or 3,932 euros) simply for distributing one religious brochure. He then canceled the fines because the women have been in jail since February 17, 2015. The decision completely disregards a UN ruling that directed Azerbaijan to compensate the women for their unjust imprisonment.
Although in very poor health, Ms. Zakharchenko and Ms. Jabrayilova are relieved to be free. They are now home and recovering with their families.
Why was the abusive treatment of two innocent women justified by a conviction?