Press secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan, Aykhan Hajizada answered the question of the local media on an anti-Azerbaijani statement made by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs about the detention of the citizen of France, APA reports.
"The claims by the French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs that the detention of their citizen is arbitrary is null and void. This baseless statement is another attempt to distort the reality, and intervene into the internal affairs of Azerbaijan and the legal investigation process. Martin Rian, a citizen of the Republic of France, was detained on 4 December 2023 on suspicion of committing the crime under the Article 276 (espionage) of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Azerbaijan. Later, the Court made a decision about the pretrial detention of this person for 4 months," said Aykhan Hajizada while answering the question "The Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs of the French Republic in response to the question by the Agence France-Presse has stated that they consider the detention of the citizen of France in Azerbaijan to be arbitrary and demand the immediate release of him. How would you comment this statement?"
"The Azerbaijani side has fully complied with the national legislation and international obligations while taking measures against the mentioned French citizen. Since his detention the Consular officers of the French Embassy have visited the suspect several times and are fully aware about the case.
Moreover, notwithstanding the fact that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Azerbaijan has addressed the note verbale to the Embassy of France in Azerbaijan requesting the investigation of the case regarding the collaboration of the mentioned person with two employees of the French Embassy, the French side has refused to provide any explanation and declined cooperation in the investigation. Therefore, these two employees were declared as personae non gratae by Azerbaijan.
We once again strongly urge the French side to cease the intervention into the internal affairs of Azerbaijan and the criminal investigation measures related the mentioned case," he said.