The European Parliament, the EU’s elected representatives, have made clear they will not ratify a deal with Azerbaijan unless it improves it’s human rights record. The European Commission should now follow through with a clear message — Azerbaijan’s crackdown on dissent must end and political prisoners freed.
One of the outcomes of the stark polarisation of news media globally is that people tend to align to the media outlets which resonate most with their ideological beliefs. In most cases, consumption of a particular ideological media source can only reinforce one’s beliefs, which might lead to an even further polarisation of the audience. These patterns can be characteristic of mass media in contexts as different as, for instance, the United States and Lebanon. As the data from the December 2017 CRRC/NDI survey shows, people in Georgia also appear to place more trust in media that aligns with their political beliefs. [Read more…]
Despite official censorship in the early days of Azerbaijan’s independence, journalists enjoyed more freedom then than they do now. Oligarchic control over the country’s media and fear of prosecution, or even death, mean many journalists now resort to self-censorship.
The vice-president and Editor-in-Chief of RFE/RL (Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty) Nenad Pejić has confirmed that the outlet had been considering partnering with Rustavi 2 TV, but that they no longer are. Pejić arrived in Georgia on 8 February and spoke with a number of local NGOs, after several organisations signed an open letter calling for answers. They had been concerned over reports that RFE/RL was pressuring its Georgian service, Radio Tavisupleba, to cooperate with the Rustavi 2. [Read more…]
The head of RFE/RL’s Georgian service, Radio Tavisupleba, has been fired ‘due to a disagreement with the central management’, according to him, with the outlet’s bureau chief reportedly resigning in protest. There have been reports RFE/RL’s central management has been pushing the bureau to affiliate with opposition-leaning TV channel Rustavi 2.
Elchin Ismayilli, a political activist and journalist in Azerbaijan’s Ismayilli District, has been sentenced to nine years in prison for ‘extortion’, ‘bribery’ and ‘abuse of office’. [Read more…]
Baku’s Yasamal District Court released Mehman Aliyev, head of independent news outlet the Turan Information Agency, from pretrial detention on 11 September, placing him under house arrest. The charges against him are still pending.
Baku Court of Appeals rejected an appeal on 30 August by Mehman Aliyev, the head of independent news outlet the Turan Information Agency, for the charges against him to be dropped. Aliyev was arrested last week on charges of ‘tax evasion’ and ‘abuse of power’; rights groups and several Western governments have called for his release. [Read more…]