Azerbaijani journalists should put national interests above everything else
Baku, Azerbaijan, March 17
By Elchin Mehdiyev - Trend:
Azerbaijani government respects and cares about all journalists, regardless of the media outlets they work for, whether pro-government or oppositional ones, head of the Department of Public and Political Issues of Azerbaijani Presidential Administration, Ali Hasanov said on March 17.
Hasanov made the remarks while speaking at the ceremony of awarding winners of journalistic essays in Baku.
He said, of course, there are attempts to set up an Azerbaijani journalist against the state and national interests of Azerbaijan.
"Unfortunately, some individuals, who have poor understanding of statehood, can, for some time, join these movements and together with them participate in campaigns against the state and the nation," Hasanov said. "But be aware that the state has never thought of punishing these people. At best, they will be punished by society, history."
Hasanov also stressed that Azerbaijani president has repeatedly met with journalists and always called on them never to forget the feelings of statehood, patriotism, because all have one birthplace - Azerbaijan.
"Wherever you go, you will be distinguished from other nations by the fact that you are Azerbaijanis, bearers of the Azerbaijanism ideology. As citizens of Azerbaijan you can create an image of Azerbaijanism, and you should be proud that you are Azerbaijanis. Our national leader Heydar Aliyev had said, 'I have always been proud and I am proud today that I am an Azerbaijani'. What could be higher than this?" Hasanov said.
He went on to note that journalists are one of the most active layers of creative people, and Azerbaijani national leader Heydar Aliyev always emphasized journalistic work.
"Hasan bey Zardabi had laid the foundation of national press in Azerbaijan, but national leader Heydar Aliyev freed the national press from all regulatory mechanisms, ensured its dynamic progress and did everything possible for its full development," he said. "The foundations of freedom of speech were literally laid in Azerbaijan on August 6, 1998."
"Heydar Aliyev used to say that journalistic work requires selflessness. Today one can say a lot about President Ilham Aliyev's attitude to journalism. All of you know that after Ilham Aliyev was elected president, he not only continued the democratic traditions, the foundation of which was laid by Heydar Aliyev, but fully demonstrated Azerbaijan's care and attention to the national journalism and creative people."
Hasanov underscored that progressive measures were taken to improve the social welfare and living conditions of journalists upon President Aliyev's orders on improving the social welfare of journalists and strengthening the material-technical base of media.
"The Azerbaijani media outlets became state supported," Hasanov said.
"This contest envisages not only creation of a competitive sphere for journalists, but a campaign which serves the purpose of improving their welfare as well," Hasanov said.