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Appeals by citizens to state authorities with suggestions, petitions and complaints shall be the main aspect of human rights practices and protection.
Article 1. Right to appeal
On the basis of part one Article 57 of the Constitution of the Azerbaijan Republic, citizens of the Azerbaijan Republic shall be entitled to appeal, as well as to submit individual and collective written appeals to state authorities. Each appeal shall be responded in writing in accordance with procedures and within terms stipulated under law.
Article 2. Legislation on procedures for review of citizens’ appeals
Legislation on procedures for review of citizen appeals shall be comprised of the Constitution of the Azerbaijan Republic, this Law and other legislative acts of the Azerbaijan Republic.
Article 3. Key definitions
Suggestion - appeal aimed at improvement of the activity of government authority, entity, organization and enterprise, resolution of issues, related to education, science, technology, legislation, arts and other areas.
Petition — appeal stipulating requirements, related with implementation of rights to which citizens are entitled.
Complaint — appeal with requirement on reinpetition of violated rights to state authority, entity, organization and enterprise.
Article 4. Areas outside of scope of this Law
This Law shall not be applicable for review of citizen appeals under court proceedings.
Appeals of military servicemen, related with their service, shall be reviewed in accordance with Internal Service Charter and disciplinary Charter of Military Forces of the Azerbaijan Republic.
Appeals related with holding of referendum shall be reviewed in accordance withElections Code of the Azerbaijan Republic.
Procedures for review by representative on human rights (ombudsman) of citizens appeals in the Azerbaijan Republic shall be regulated under this Law.
Article 5. Responsibilities of government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises
Government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall provide equal conditions for implementation in accordance with procedures established and secured under Constitution and legislation of the Azerbaijan Republic of rights of citizens in the Azerbaijan Republic, to submit in writing or verbally suggestions, petitions, complaints against illegal actions (failures to act) of public officials.
Government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises, their heads, other public officials shall accept and review in accordance with their competence and under procedures and within terms established under this Law suggestions, petitions and complaints of citizens, adopt necessary measures and bear responsibility for these. In review of suggestions, petitions and complaints heads and other public officials of government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall:
- Review them carefully, if necessary enquire documents needed and adopt other measures to resolve the matter;
- Inform citizens in writing on results of review of suggestions, petitions and complaints, if those are not satisfied, to indicate the reasons and explain the appeal procedures;
- Provide adoption of grounded decisions on suggestions, petitions and complaints, as well as timely and appropriate execution of these decisions. Government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall on systematic basis review the status of review of citizen appeals and adopt measures for termination of causes for submission of duplicating petitions and complaints by citizens, related with violation of their interests, protected under the law.
Article 6. Procedures for reception of citizens
Heads and other public officials of government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall organize the reception of citizens. Citizens shall be met at dates and time agreed in advance. When necessary, heads and other public officials of government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall meet citizens immediately.
Article 7. Procedures for review of appeals
Citizens submit suggestions and petitions to government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises, who bear direct responsibility for relevant issues.
Government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises, their heads and public officials, when the resolution of issues submitted in the proposal is not within their competence, shall send them no later than within five days to relevant organizations and inform the applicant of this, and during personal meeting explain where he shall appeal.
Appeal shall be deemed reviewed, when the matter indicated in the appeal is reviewed and citizen is provided with grounded response.
In direction of citizen appeals by the state authority to other government authorities, entities, organizations, enterprises for their review at belonging and in accepting of the appeal for control, such authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall provide the government authority with grounded response on the appeal within the term established under this Law. Response letter to the government authority on appeal shall be signed by the supervisor of relevant body, entity, organization, enterprise.
Refusal to accept the appeal is prohibited.
During acceptance for review of enquiry to submit the information, it is prohibited to demand from the applicant to provide reasons for requesting such information.
Written appeal shall be signed by citizen, contain his complete name, address and employment. If appeal does not contain this information is shall be deemed anonymous. Anonymous appeals shall not be reviewed.
It is prohibited to send citizen complaints for review to authorities or public officials, whose actions (failures to act) are subject of complaint. “Government authorities can conduct acceptance and answering of appeals in an electronic form.”
Article 8. Appeal administration procedure
Suggestions, petitions and complaints of citizen shall be registered in administration. Documents contain stamp, indicating date and number of receiving. If requested by citizens, he is informed about number and date of registration of his proposal, petition and complaint. Administration of citizen appeals shall be organized by the head of authority.
Administration is performed in accordance with procedures approved by relevant executive authority.
Article 9. Right of appeal
Citizen, who does not agree with decision, made on his proposal, appeal, complaint shall be entitled to appeal against the decision in the authority or before public officials, to which the decision making authority, entity, organization, enterprise or public official is subordinated.
Complaints may be submitted to court in accordance with procedures of legislation.
Article 10. Term of review of appeal
Appeal shall be reviewed within one month, with exception of cases stipulated under legislation, and appeals, not requiring additional review and inspection, no later than within 15 days, unless other term is stipulated under legislation.
In the event of necessity to conduct special investigation, requirements for additional materials or adoption of other measures for review of appeal, head or deputy of relevant authority, entity, organization or enterprise shall in exceptional cases extend the period of review of appeal for more than one month. Applicant shall be informed on this, if the appeal is controlled by government authority, notification shall be made to such government authority.
Appeals of military servicemen and their family members shall be reviewed no later than within 15 days from the date of receiving.
If, as a result of review of enquiry for submission of information within above term, the importance of information will be lost, such appeals are reviewed immediately, and if not possible- within 24 hours.
Appeals on illegal decisions and actions of competent state authorities and public officials, providing security of state court and law-enforcement agencies protected by state, shall be reviewed immediately.
Article 10-1. The features of reviewing of appeals related to corruption offences
10-1.1. In government authorities appeals related to corruption offences are reviewed according to this law taking into account features of this article.
10-1.2 Service investigation is assigned by head of government authority when appeal related to corruption offences is submitted. Service investigation is conducted by internal control service of the relevant government authority. Service investigation should be completed in 20 days period and the result should be presented to head of government authority. Head of government authority can prolong the period for 10 days if there is a need to require additional materials or conduct other measures.
10-1.3 Head of government authority takes one of the following decisions about appeal as soon as receives the result of service investigation:
10-1.3.1 take measures according to legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan if appeal is proved to be grounded, as well as if there are signs of civil, administrative and criminal liability in the complained act;
10-1.3.2 involve related persons to disciplinary measures according to the legislation of the Republic of Azerbaijan if appeal is proved to be grounded but there is no signs which can create civil-legal, administrative or criminal liability;
10-1.3.3 cancel the proceeding on complaint if appeal is proved not to be grounded.
10-1.4 Applicant shall be given motivated response about taken decision and shall be explained his right to appeal the decision.
10-1.5 complaint can be lodged to higher government authority about the decision of state power authority. This provision doesn’t limit the person’s right to lodge a complaint to court about the decision of government authority.
10-1.6 Appeals related to corruption offences in bodies, organizations, institutions which are not considered state authority body are reviewed in 20 days period according to general rules defined in this law.
Article 11. Liability for violation of this Law
Heads of government authorities, entities, organizations and enterprises shall be responsible for organization of receiving and review of suggestions, petitions and complaints of citizens.
Public officials in fault for violation of procedures established for review of suggestions, appeals and complaints of citizens, as well as persons persecuting citizens due to submission of suggestions, complaints or containing criticism, shall bear disciplinary, civil and criminal liability in accordance with legislation.
In submission of appeal or complaint to slander, citizen shall bear liability in accordance with legislation.
Article 12. Procedures for review of appeals of foreign citizens and persons without citizenship
Review of appeals of foreign citizens and persons without citizenship shall be regulated under this Law, unless other procedures are stipulated under international treaties, to which the Azerbaijan Republic is a signatory.
President of the Azerbaijan Republic
City of Baku, June 10, 1997