Azerbaijan, Baku / corr. Trend S.Ilhamgizi / Through the initiative by the Caucasus Media Investigations Centre, the World Committee for Freedom of Press established a Fund of Anti-Censorship Grants. The Head of the Caucasus Media Investigations Centre, Anar Orujov, said on 25 July that the Fund aims to finance protection of rights of Rovshan Kebirli, Editor-in-Chief of Mukhalifet newspaper, and Yashar Agazade, a correspondent of the newspaper.
On 16 May, Kebirli and Agazade were sentenced to two and a half years imprisonment through accusations made by academician Jalal Aliyev.
Orujov said that initially, the Fund allocated $1,000 to the journalists for paying their lawyers' fees. Other law observers are also intended to be involved in the process, for which additional finance in the same amount will be allocated. According to Orujov, the key goal of the World Committee for Freedom of Press is to provide grants to release arrested journalists. Therefore, talks are also held with international organizations to resolve material problems of journalists and render assistance to their families.
Orujov said that the Fund may cover the expenses for protecting other unfairly prosecuted journalists. "The initiative in this process should be made by journalists themselves and in its turn, Caucasus Media Investigations Centre will send these appeals to the World Committee for Freedom of Press," Orujov said.