Azerbaijan, Baku / Тrend corr K. Ramazanova / The US State Department is deeply concerned by the 11 November conviction of Ganimat Zahid, editor-in-chief of the Azerbaijani newspaper Azadliq.
"Azadliq is a pro-opposition newspaper that is routinely critical of the government and authorities of Azerbaijan," a report by the Spokesman for the US State Department Shona McCormack states.
On 11 November, the Yasamal District Court in Baku sentenced Zahid to a 2-month prison term for hooliganism and assault charges. There are eight media representatives imprisoned in Azerbaijan on criminal defamation and other charges
"These events suggest an alarming trend of deliberate pressure against the independent and pro-opposition media," the report says.
The US Government strongly urged the Government of Azerbaijan to comply with its stated commitments to respect freedom of speech and rule of law and to support the development of an independent media in Azerbaijan