The Sultan of All Azerbaijan declared the Armenian city of Shushi the “cultural capital” of his country. It is, of course, understandable that when there is no culture and cultural center of its own, then the occupied city, which was the cultural and educational center of the Armenian people and the entire South Caucasus, should be declared as such. Another thing is that, as Iranian scholar Vardan Voskanyan noted, “the dictator of Baku can declare Shushi not only the” cultural capital “of an artificial formation called Azerbaijan, but the entire Universe, but without the permission of the Russian peacekeepers at this very moment even he cannot get to” their capital “.Read more “Aliyev announced his intention to destroy the cultural heritage of Artsakh”
Today’s European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) judgment in favour of an Azerbaijani journalist who faced a sex-tape smear campaign after investigating government corruption exposes the ongoing crackdown on freedom of expression in the country, Amnesty International said.
An Azerbaijani media-rights group has added its name to the list of organizations urging the government to release a hunger-striking blogger who was targeted with a new charge just weeks before his expected release from prison.
Members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), Human Rights Watch (HRW), and other watchdog groups, and The Washington Post’s editorial board have also demanded that 26-year-old Mehman Huseynov be freed.
In September last year, a massive leak of bank records from 2012 to 2014 showed that the ruling elite of Azerbaijan ran a US$2.9 billion slush fund and an international money laundering scheme. Part of the money was used to help whitewash Azerbaijan’s international image, which had been rightly tainted due to grave human rights violations. European politicians, who took money to talk up Azerbaijan were complicit, along with European financial institutions that enabled the scheme.
What else you can expect from such government?
On 3 October, Azerbaijani journalist Aytaj Ahmadova was detained while filming a protest in Zabrat, a settlement close to Baku.
A group of citizens had been protesting against their desolate living conditions, demanding that the government renovated their unsafe homes which are in danger of collapsing.
The number of political prisoners in Azerbaijan remains approximately the same from year to year. The president regularly signs pardon decrees but the “vacancies” on bunk beds in prisons are quickly occupied by newly-arrived opponents of the political elite of Azerbaijan.
The following is a Meydan TV report about how the possibility of pardon is used to manipulate political prisoners and how the prisoners themselves have become bargaining chips in the Azerbaijani government’s foreign policy.
The Azerbaijani authorities have pulled the plug on the news agency APA, an indication that even reliably pro-government media are not safe in the ongoing crackdown on press in the country.
APA, as well as its sister agencies Lent.az and APA Sport in the company APA Holding, were all shut down on August 1. The authorities did not provide any explanation, but media observers in the country suggest that there could be internal business struggles behind the move.
Azerbaijan denied entry for Russian citizen with armenian last name. 81 years old Olga Barsegyan was born in Leningrad, survived the blockade and is a veteran of the Great Patriotic War, was deported from International airport of Baku. Of course the reason for deportation does not state it was the armenian origin. You can check official scan of deportation document – “other reasons“. That what they call it!
Officially Baku does not confirm the undesirability of entry to the territory of Azerbaijan to persons of Armenian origin, but such practice exists. And this was not the first time and I think not the last.
In 2013, a Russian journalist, Anna Sahakyan was not allowed to enter Azerbaijan, later being even declared a persona non grata for her Armenian family name.
In May 2016, an 8-year-old child with an Armenian surname was denied entry to Azerbaijan at Baku’s Heydar Aliyev international airport.
A Russian citizen, M. V. Uyeldanov (Galustyan) was detained in Azerbaijan over his Armenian origin in July 2016.
An Estonian citizen of Armenian origin was held at the airport in the Azerbaijani capital city of Baku for 12 hours and sent back to Estonia in late March.
The border service and Azerbaijani carriers, as a rule, explain the deportation or refusal to admit safety considerations to the board.
Maltese taxpayers could be losing tens of millions of dollars per year in an energy deal with Azerbaijan, according to expert analysis of leaked files.
A whistleblower gave a cache of data to Daphne Caruana Galizia, the Maltese investigative journalist who was killed by a car bomb last October.
She was not able to publish her findings before her death. But the leaked material was then shared with the Daphne Project, which has been working to complete her reporting. The consortium of 45 investigative reporters from 18 news organizations in 15 countries, including the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and the Guardian, was organized by Forbidden Stories.
Three energy experts in London have examined the files, which contain pricing information that Malta’s Prime Minister Joseph Muscat has so far refused to publish.
A prominent lawyer spoke openly about the beating of his client while in custody, perhaps thinking that it could stir change in Azerbaijan.
Action was taken in the authoritarian country, but not against the police suspected of carrying out the beating. Instead, it is the whistle-blowing lawyer who finds himself being punished.
Shortly after speaking out, Yalcin Imanov, who has defended a number of government critics, was suspended by the Azerbaijani Bar Association. He awaits a final decision this month on whether he will be formally disbarred.