In Azerbaijan, the judicial system is a black hole. Rarely do cases get resolved. The judiciary is a corrupt institution with its judges scoring golden stars by their mere ruthless behavior in courts. And this is more so the case when it comes to Azerbaijan's political prisoners or as many international rights watchdogs call them, prisoners of conscience.
Having a fair trial as a political prisoner in the country is unimaginable. They make you feel helpless no matter how many lawyers you have, no matter how much evidence there is that proves clearly you are innocent.
Turns out there is more they can actually do to silence you.
Recently the Ministry of Justice installed "glass cages" as opposed to normal holding cells installed inside the court rooms. The defendant has a microphone but its control is in the hands of the presiding judge.
And so, when the voice of Khadija Ismayil was "muted" during her preliminary hearing on October 15 it was not at all surprising. The judge clearly was not interested in her commentary and perhaps he was not interested in her case at all. Not only have they silenced her by putting her in jail on bogus charges, preventing her from doing her job as a journalist, but now they are trying to mute her completely, not even let her speak at the court.
During Leyla Yunus and Arif Yunus preliminary hearing which also took place yesterday, their microphone was not even on so the couple had no idea what is being discussed inside the court room at all.
So where is tolerance in that? The tolerance that Mehriban Aliyeva was proudly boasting about just few weeks ago in Paris? Where is democracy in that? The one that President Aliyev talks about all the time? Where is respect for your own citizens?
There isn't one. The government of Azerbaijan has no tolerance or respect for its very own people. It treats them like animals, keeping them on a leash and feeds them propaganda and gets away with it just fine in an unjust system that only benefits those who are ready to suck up and lose their humanness or throw it down the toilet for comforts of life and Aliyev- style security.
Welcome to muted Azerbaijan ladies and gentleman.