February 29, 2012

 “They Took Everything from Me”

Forced Evictions, Unlawful Expropriations, and House Demolitions in Azerbaijan’s Capital

Summary and Key Recommendations
I. Background
Azerbaijan’s Political Landscape
Hydrocarbon Wealth and Construction Boom
Eurovision Song Contest and Related Construction
II. Development, Expropriations, and Human Rights
III.Forced Evictions and Demolitions of Homes in Central Baku
Forced Evictions Immediately Prior to Demolitions
Illegal Detention as a Component of Forced Eviction
Forced Eviction through Dismantling of Homes and Cutting of Services to Homes in Which Residents Continue to Live
Threats and Intimidation of Homeowners
Lack of Transparency
IV. Forced Evictions and Expropriations in Azerbaijani and International Law
Forced Evictions under Azerbaijani and International Law
Expropriation under Azerbaijani and International Law..
V. Failure to Provide Alternative Accommodation or Adequate Compensation
Forced Sale at an Arbitrary Price
Arbitrary and Inaccurate Measurement of Homes as the Basis for Compensation
Failure to Provide Accommodation of Commensurate Size and Quality and Denial of Property Rights
International Law regarding Compensation Mechanisms
VI. Protection and Redress
Demolition of Homes in Violation of Injunctions and Despite Pending Lawsuits
Excessive Delays in Trials Related to Property Claims
Complaints to Other State Agencies
VII. The Role of Azerbaijan’s International Partners
Criticism of Expropriations, Evictions, and Demolitions
The Crucial Role of the European Union and the United States
Multilateral Development Banks Silent
The European Broadcasting Union
VIII. Recommendations
To the Government of Azerbaijan, including the Baku City Executive Authority and the State Committee on Property
To the Prosecutor General’s Office of Azerbaijan
To the European Broadcasting Union
To the European Broadcasting Union Members
To Azerbaijan’s Bilateral Partners, including the European Union, individual European States, and the United States
To The Council of Europe
To the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development