Baku, Azerbaijan, Feb. 14
Legal proceedings will be launched against organizers and executors of anti-Azerbaijan campaign, Azerbaijani President's Assistant for Public and Political Affairs Ali Hasanov told Trend on Feb. 14.
Hasanov made the remarks commenting on the acquittal decision of an Italian court regarding Luca Volonte, the former chair of the European People's Party group in PACE, who was accused of corruption ties with Azerbaijan.
The Feb. 13 decision of the Milan court confirmed that information disseminated through a structure called Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP), established in mid-2017 for opaque and well-known purposes upon order of anti-Azerbaijan networks and centers, is unfounded and biased, and also confirmed that this is aimed at tarnishing Azerbaijan's healthy international image, Hasanov said.
Hasanov noted that by such numerous forged reports, anti-Azerbaijan networks and centers want to turn Azerbaijani state, as well as prominent public figures, experts, journalists and others, who have friendly relations with the country, into objects of condemnation.
“It is no coincidence that the OCCRP article titled “The Azerbaijani Laundromat” was promptly replicated by the global media, authorities of certain countries got interested in this issue and special investigation was launched regarding the persons mentioned in the article, including Luca Volonte, who allegedly received $2.64 million from Azerbaijan,” Ali Hasanov said.
He reminded that at that time Azerbaijan disseminated an appeal noting that these allegations are biased, unreasonable, provocative and are an integral part of the slander campaign organized by well-known circles against Azerbaijan.
“As we can see, this was also confirmed by an objective investigation of the Milan court,” Ali Hasanov said.
He added that the Azerbaijani government is sufficiently informed about the organizers and executors of the campaign to discredit the image of the state and its partners.
“We intend to launch the relevant legal proceedings in connection with those involved in this slander campaign,” he noted. “The relevant state agencies of Azerbaijan have already been instructed regarding this issue. We believe that those who organize international campaigns against states, structures, individuals under cover of democracy and freedom of speech should realize responsibility for this and be punished.”