European Games to have positive result - Foundation for Development of Democracy and Human Rights
Baku, Azerbaijan, June 18
The first European Games, being held in Baku, will sure to have a positive result, Murad Sadaddinov, the chairman of the Foundation for the Development of Democracy and Human Rights, said in an interview with Trend news agency.
"It is necessary to continue using this experience following the first European Games," he said.
"We often stress the importance of this event for the international image of Azerbaijan," he said. "But we do not stress its effectiveness for people. The infrastructure of the city is being developed, culture of the representatives of the city and municipal services is changing. The trainings of some 1,000 public transport drivers are underway," Sadaddinov said.
He added that it is pleasant to see the polite and neatly dressed bus drivers not violating the traffic rules.
"All citizens of Azerbaijan, involved in this event, will gain good professional skills," he said. "Hundreds of young volunteers will get their first experience of participation in such a large-scale event."
Regarding those criticizing Azerbaijan, Sadaddinov said that when doing something significant, there will always be naysayers.
"We can recall what happened on the eve of London 2012 Olympic Games," he said, adding that according to some estimations, the media published about 3,000 articles criticizing these games.
The most important thing is that the Azerbaijani society fully supports the Games and is proud of the fact that they are being held namely in Baku at such a high level, he said.
"Everything falls into place gradually and the hysteria of the naysayers is gradually decreasing," said Sadaddinov.
Even the Euronews TV channel initially tried to ignore the European Games, however, now each newscast on this TV channel includes news from Baku, he added.
Sadaddinov added that such an interrelation between the human rights issues and the active participation of persons and organizations which frequently use any opportunity to criticize Azerbaijan in these issues, will never lead to the settlement of such problems.
The effectiveness of such dialogues between the government and the local human rights activists is more productive than the attempts to put pressure on the government from the outside, according to Sadaddinov.
Those who have been amnestied, got the freedom not through external pressure, but as a result of the fruitful, sometimes routine, yet purposeful work of the local human rights activists with the government, he added.
The European Games that kicked off in Baku June 12, will last till June 28. There is a total of 20 sports at Baku 2015: 16 Olympic sports and four non-Olympic sports. More than 6,000 athletes from across Europe will be representing their nations over 17 days of competition.
Baku was awarded the games by the European Olympic Committees (EOC) in December 2012.
Edited by SI