Azerbaijani journalists appeal to parliament due to Law on Defamation
Azerbaijan, Baku, May 20 / Trend , K.Zarbaliyeva/
A group of heads of Azerbaijani journalist organizations has appealed to the Parliament related to the acception of the Law on Defamation.
Journalists are make answerable and publishing houses are fined under the Articles 147 (defamation) and 148 (insult), of the Criminal Code of 2005.
"This has led to criticism of Azerbaijan by international organizations. European organizations concerned about the fate of journalists imprisoned for criticizing. The way out is the exception to the provisions of the criminal liability for defamation," the statement said.
The draft Law on Defamation was designed with the support of the OSCE Baku office in 2005. Deputies Ganira Pashayeva and Azay Guliyev, as well as journalists and jurists contributed in the draft.
International organizations believe that Article 147 (defamation) and 148 (insult), which provides for criminal responsibility should be excluded from the Criminal Code of the country.
Chairman of the Azerbaijani Press Council Aflatun Amashov appealed to the Speaker Oktay Asadov related to discussion of the draft Law on Defamation in Parliament.
The statement said that recently the head of state will review the issue concerning the imprisonment of journalists. A great importance is focused to the problem of withdrawal of criminal liability for defamation.
"The problem once again confirms that it is not right to imprison journalists for what they are about issues of social and public importance. This does not mean that journalists can not be with the law and write what they want. But punishment should be adequate," the statement said.
Leaders of journalism organizations call for abolition of a measure imprisonment.
The statement was signed by leaders of the Journalist Organizations of Azerbaijan - New Generation, League of Democratic Journalists, Center for Journalism and Development, Center for Media in Azerbaijan and the Najaf NajafovFund.
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