Ilham Aliyev: Baku World News Congress - sign of Azerbaijan's achievement in development of independent media
Baku, Azerbaijan, Nov. 16
By Seymur Aliyev - Trend:
The 5th News Agencies World Congress, the 16th General Assembly of the Organization of Asia-Pacific News Agencies (OANA) and the 22nd session of the Council of CIS Heads of News Agencies have kicked off in the Heydar Aliyev Center in Baku.
Addressing the opening ceremony, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev noted that almost two hundred guests from 80 countries representing more than hundred of the world's leading news agencies from five continents, have gathered in Baku, for the 5th World News Agencies Congress.
"This is a big honor for us to host this important global international event, and I am sure that our guests will not only discuss the important issues on the agenda, but also know more about Azerbaijan, see the development of the country," said the president.
He added that the country is modern, dynamic and has great potential for the future.
"We consider hosting this event in Azerbaijan also a sign of appreciation of the activity and achievements of Azerbaijan in the development of independent media," the president said. "This is one of the priorities for our government."
"I think that the achievements during the 25 years of independence show that we managed to provide freedom of media, as well as all other fundamental freedoms," said the president.
"Today, in Azerbaijan there are almost fourty daily, more than two hundred weekly and monthly newspapers, ten nationwide, one satellite, thirteen regional, seventeen cable TV," he said.
President Aliyev added that Azerbaijan is a country with completely free Internet, and more than 75 percent of population are internet users. He added that the population of the country is close to ten million, and there are two million social media users in Azerbaijan.
"So these figures show that development of free media in Azerbaijan was very successful, we achieved our goal and one of the areas of transformation for our country during these 25 years, along with political and economic reforms, was the area of reforms in democratic development," Ilham Aliyev said.
"Last month we celebrated the 25th anniversary of restoration of our independence. Restoration, because the first democratic republic of Azerbaijan was established almost a hundred years ago in 1918. Unfortunately, first Democratic Republic lasted for only two years, but these two years were important. They laid down the foundation for democratic development of our nation," said the president.
He went on to add that Azerbaijan Democratic Republic was the first democratic republic in the Muslim world.
"One of the achievements of the republic was that women were granted with the right to vote - much earlier than in many European countries," he said.