Miklos Haraszti's epoch finish for Azerbaijan in 2010: Trend News Commentator Elmira Tariverdiyeva

Miklos Haraszti's epoch finish for Azerbaijan in 2010: Trend News Commentator Elmira Tariverdiyeva

Trend European Desk Commentator Elmira Tariverdiyeva

In March 2010, OSCE Representative on Media Freedom Miklos Haraszti will leave his post due to the end of his tenure. Over the past five years, after Haraszti took office, the Hungarian journalist and human rights activist has taken an ambiguous stance on Azerbaijan, by criticizing official Baku for restricting freedom of speech in the country.

The issue is not that there is an ideal situation with the freedom of speech in Azerbaijan. Statehood includes a considerable number of problems, including freedom of the media. But Haraszti's obvious criticism of Azerbaijan and apparent disregard for facts that have occurred in other countries in the post-Soviet space surprises.

Does the situation with freedom of speech in Azerbaijan differ from the situation in Georgia or Armenia? Hardly. Then why do the number of official press releases lambasting Azerbaijan during his tenure exceed the number of those in other countries of the South Caucasus?

This article is not an appeal to Haraszti to ignore events in Azerbaijan and focus on facts in other countries. This is just a request about objectivity to the office of the OSCE on freedom.

About 20 negative press releases on Azerbaijan were published by Haraszti's office from 2004-2009, whereas there were five on Armenia, and one on Georgia.

We are not saying that all 20 press releases on Azerbaijan were false and unfounded. But it is difficult to believe that the situation with freedom of speech in Armenia and Georgia is so close to the ideal as it may seem from these statistics.

The question is why Haraszti has chosen Azerbaijan as the main target of criticism.

It should be noted that Georgia has only been sent one critical press release from the OSCE during Haraszti's tenure. There were many reasons to recall freedom of speech during the above-mentioned period. Several TV channels were closed when Haraszti took office in Georgia. Journalists have been repeatedly harassed. Censorship was introduced in October 2007.

The situation was demonstrative when famous Georgian political analyst, information holding Georgian Times head Malkhaz Gulashvili made the following statement due to threats to his family. He said he took an unprecedented decision for the first time in 17 years of uninterrupted work at the Georgian Times. The Georgian edition has suspended its activity. The myth of press freedom in Georgia is under a question.

As to Armenia, it is impossible to say that the level of freedom of speech in this country differs substantially from other post-Soviet states. In January 2009, a Freedom House report stressed that regress was noted in Armenia in terms of democratic freedoms.

The document states that 2008 was the biggest crisis period for political and civil freedoms after the country gained independence. The reports says violence committed against journalists by law enforcement agencies has increased.

Previously, Amnesty International issued a statement expressing concern about the situation in Armenia after the March 2008 events. Amnesty International points to the beatings of journalists during the presidential elections and post-election period, and damaging media property.

Does it mean that all the activities durring Haraszti's tenure over the last five years were aimed at only finding problems in Azerbaijan while ignoring the situation in other countries? Or are the OSCE employees who are watching the situation in our country more zealously fulfilling their duties than observers on other countries?

And the main question is whether the policy of the OSCE office on freedom of the media will change after Haraszti's dismissal.

Weekly actual topics in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Weekly actual topics in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Weekly tenders in the region (April 16-20)
Weekly tenders in the region (April 16-20)
Last week’s laws, orders and decrees in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Last week’s laws, orders and decrees in Azerbaijan (April 16-20)
Loading Bars
President Ilham Aliyev: Azerbaijani Army liberated Minjivan settlement and 13 villages of Zangilan district
Armenia once again betrays Russia
President Ilham Aliyev: Azerbaijani Army liberates 3 villages of Fuzuli district, 5 villages of Jabrayil district
Armenian side forced to recognize Azerbaijani army’s superiority - Defense Ministry
Armenia's defensive system, military equipment and terrorists didn't help - Azerbaijan's MoD
Liberation of Zangilan to increase production and export of Azerbaijan's mineral resources
Morocco's import of Turkey's jewelry, precious stones drops
Turkey's export of jewelry, precious stones to Iran decreases - Trade Ministry
Armenia has no interest in peaceful settlement of Karabakh conflict - top official
France reduces imports of jewelry, precious stones from Turkey
Georgia's import of Turkey's jewelry, precious stones down for 9M2020
Car prices in Iran drop
Iraq likely to unblock Iran's assets
Iran continues to increase non-oil exports
Supplies of jewelry from Turkey to Iraqi market decline in 9M2020
Dissemination of inaccurate info by some websites not to affect Qatar-Azerbaijan relations - embassy
Kazakhstan’s ERG Service to establish foundry products export to Uzbekistan
Turkish jewelry supplies to Azerbaijani market plunge
No diplomatic way to resolve Karabakh conflict, admits Armenian PM
Georgia implementing new project to provide remote villages with internet
Actual revenues to Azerbaijan's budget from State Customs Service top forecast
SOCAR details plans for expanding gas distribution network in Georgia
Iranian Energy Exchange announces products to be on sale October 24
Compound feed producing plant to be commissioned in Almaty
Most Azerbaijani monuments in occupied territories Armenianized or destroyed
Georgia reveals TOP 5 banks with highest interest on loans
Uzbekistan reveals growth rate of investments spent in fixed assets for 9M2020
China's import of jewelry, precious stones from Turkey slumps
EU leaders to hold COVID-19 video-conference October 29
Iran's Persian Gulf Star Oil Company boosts its exports
Turkey increases export of jewelry to US - Ministry of Trade
Transfers by Azerbaijan's State Oil Fund to state budget for 9M2020 revealed
Union of Importers of Oil Products of Georgia talks adoption of new standard for diesel fuel
Subsidies for agriculture dev't allocated in Kazakhstan's Almaty region
Price of mobile internet down in Georgia
Data on sales in foreign currency at Turkmenistan’s exchange in September
Bahar Azadi gold coin price continues to fall in Iran
Fitch Ratings notes Georgia’s ability to comfortably meet its funding needs
Volume of paid salaries decreases in Georgia
Germany's 9M2020 import of Turkish jewelry shrinks
President Ilham Aliyev interviewed by Japan’s Nikkei newspaper (PHOTO)
Azerbaijan, Russia enhancing bilateral co-op on innovative dev't, digital economy
Uzbekistan resumes flights to UAE's Sharjah
Eni sets timeframe for wind farm construction in Kazakhstan
Azerbaijan itself implementing UN Security Council resolutions
Azerbaijan reveals state budget revenues, expenditures for 9M2020
Students of Baku Higher Oil School donate their scholarship allowances to Armed Forces Assistance Fund
Amount of investments made to launch of enterprises in Iran increases
Uzbekistan suspends gold export
Khazar Consortium opens tender for purchase of fire-fighting equipment
Georgia's import of tubes, pipes, hollow profiles from Turkey up
Three more UAVs of Armenia destroyed
Ambassador of Mexico met with Executive Director of SOFAZ
Russian entrepreneurs, well-known arm dealers involved in arming Armenia - President Aliyev
Uzbekistan considers state budget for 2021 taking into account COVID-19
Exports of knitwear from Georgia to Turkey down
Armenia creating suicide squads consisting of prisoners sentenced to death
UAE increases exports to Kazakhstan amid COVID-19
Chevron expresses will for further co-op with Kazakhstan in energy sector
Azerbaijani agency joins int'l public-private partnership association
Azerbaijani, Russian FMs meet
Exports of furniture, wood from Turkey to Turkmenistan increased
Nasdaq profit surges 76% on non-trading business strength
Georgian air company Air Georgia implements new project with United Arab Emirates
Weighted average rental rates reduce on Georgian main high streets
Azerbaijan's victory in Karabakh conflict beneficial to all parties, Russian expert says
Azerbaijan to build power supply stations in deoccupied districts
Geostat reveals volume of ferroalloys exported by Georgia to Turkey
EAEU reveals export of Turkmen vehicles
Georgia sees increase in export of flours, meals, pellets to Turkey
Operating performance of financial institutions improves in Georgia
Georgia reduces import of medicaments from Turkey
Wood, furniture exports from Turkey to Ukraine decline
Iran reveals its COVID-19 data for October 21
We drove Armenian army out of our lands so fast that they fling up their heels - President Aliyev
Azerbaijan confirms 176 more COVID-19 recoveries
Military equipment abandoned by Armenian army on battlefield (PHOTO / VIDEO)
President Ilham Aliyev on possibility of observers introduction
At the last moment Armenian refused to return Kalbajar and Lachin, says president of Azerbaijan
Iran restarts extraction from Sulabdar oil field
Azerbaijan reaffirms position on Lachin corridor which is part of fundamental principles - President Aliyev
President Aliyev says no country helping Azerbaijan in fight with Armenia
If Armenian side says it is ready to withdraw troops from occupied territories, issue of so-called observers can be considered - President Aliyev
Azerbaijan wants peace, also territories that rightfully belong to it - President Aliyev
Full responsibility for what is happening now lies squarely with Pashinyan, says Azerbaijani president
We are offered to make concession to Armenia, unilateral concession, while nothing being offered in return - President Aliyev
Azerbaijan ready to suspend military operations, resolve issue at negotiating table - President Aliyev
Armenia’s terrorist authorities must be punished – Azerbaijani MP (VIDEO)
Georgia, UK aim to strengthen business and commercial ties
Volume of market services in Uzbekistan’s transport sector remains predominant despite decrease
Azerbaijan to issue support for children who lost parents after Armenia's Ganja attack (PHOTO)
Turkey raised wood, furniture exports to Russia - Trade Ministry
Heads of Christian religious communities of Azerbaijan protest against draft resolution submitted to US Congress
TANAP named Project of the Year by US-based PMI
Eni Turkmenistan Limited opens tender related to data transmission services
Tajikistan's import of Turkish furniture down
Demand for Azerbaijani CBA's short-term notes exceeds supply
Value of goods exported from Iran's Sistan and Baluchestan Province revealed
Turkic Council condemns Armenia's attacks on populated areas, civilians in Azerbaijan
Azerbaijani ASB Bank's 3Q2020 assets down
All news