January 20, 2017 - 15:42 AMT
Minsk court rules to extradite Russian-Israeli blogger to Azerbaijan

A Belarus court has decided to extradite Russian-Israeli blogger Alexander Lapshin to Azerbaijan, a statement on his personal Facebook account revealed.

Lapshin, who is 40, divides his time between Israel and other countries. He was arrested on December 15 in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, in response to a request by the Azerbaijani authorities, who have now demanded his extradition. The arrest was made a day after Prime Minister Netanyahu visited Baku. Lapshin was arrested after making several visits to Nagorno Karabakh.

According to the statement, the "fair decision" was made on January 17, and the Prosecutor General's office didn't even bother to let Lapshin's family and lawyers, or even the Russian embassy in Minsk know.

Moreover, the decision came to include surprising details, as Lapshin is now accused of contacting unknown people, creating a criminal group and violating Azerbaijan's state border in April 2011 and October 2012.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said Moscow is against Lapshin's extradition to Azerbaijan.