Azerbaijan soldier’s death sparks demo

Demonstrators carry portraits of Jeyhun Gubadov in Baku, Azerbaijan on January 12, 2013.

Several hundred people have taken to the streets in Azerbaijan to protest against the suspicious death of a soldier.

On Saturday, around 500 protesters staged a demonstration in Baku’s Fountain Square against the death of 18-year-old Jeyhun Gubadov.

The demonstrators held up pictures of Gubadov and shouted slogans such as “No to murders in peace time.”

The protesters also demanded the resignation of Defense Minister Colonel General Safar Abiyev.

Clashes broke out after police forces dispersed the crowd. Several people were arrested.

Gubadov died at a military barracks in Azerbaijan on January 7.

Mubariz Gurbanly, a leading parliamentary deputy in New Azerbaijan Party, said in an interview APA state news agency that the demands of the protesters have been heard.

Following Gubadov’s death, several soldiers were reportedly detained for investigation.

The country’s defense ministry says that the soldier died of heart failure while his family says he was beaten to death.

NT/SZH