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Statue of a Dictator (Aliyev Clan)

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#81 MosJan


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Posted 15 January 2015 - 02:44 PM

vagh@  gnum em  mexico  :)  tesnem  te  baxts  beri  gtnel et  ardzan@  mi qani ban unem anelu iran...

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#82 Yervant1


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Posted 24 January 2015 - 11:48 AM


by Nana Martirosyan

Friday, January 23, 08:34

Azerbaijan's propaganda machine misses no single chance to spread
misinformation about the Nagorno-Karabakh peace process. This time
its victim is German Chancellor Angela Merkel, whose words have been
distorted by Azerbaijani mass media.

In this light ArmInfo is publishing the word for word translation
of what Merkel said: "Germany wants to help to be of help to the
settlement of that conflict. We also talked about the possibility of
the European Union taking another initiative. I believe Azerbaijan will
talk to the European Commission about that. We are a member of the OSCE
Minsk Group, which is chaired by France, Russia and the United States
of America, and we support a resolution through negotiations. We see
that Aliyev has met with his Armenian counterpart several times and
has expressed willingness for negotiations. This conflict can only
be solved peacefully. We are concerned about the ceasefire violations
and will obviously keep them in our focus. I must take precaution and
say that Russian plays a decisive role. Perhaps Russia and Armenia
think the same way. So, you can come to the conclusion that we're
not applying different standards."

Earlier in the day Azerbaijani mass media alleged that Merkel blamed
Russia for cease-fire violations on the contact line of the Azerbaijani
and Nagorno-Karabakh armed forces. They also "quoted" her as saying
that Germany wants to replace France as OSCE Minsk Group member.


#83 Yervant1


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Posted 27 January 2015 - 08:34 AM

Armenia's Jewish Community Leader
Lashes out at Pro-Azeri Propagandists

By Harut Sassounian
Publisher, The California Courier

Rima Varzhapetyan-Feller, President of the Jewish Community of
Armenia, recently wrote a scathing article titled, "World Jewry cannot
become a tool in the hands of anti-Armenian propagators." She
criticized all those who engage in such propaganda for writing
"ordered and one-sided articles...in pursuit of profits."
Such writers attempt to exploit Israeli political circles and glorify
Azeri-Israeli relations, which consist mostly arms-for-oil deals, in
order to isolate and weaken Armenia.
Mrs. Feller mentions as examples of anti-Armenian propaganda recent
articles by Maxime Gauin and Alexander Murinson in Haaretz, Arye Gut
in JNS.com, and Alexander Murinson in The Hill.
According to Mrs. Feller, "The biography and activity of these authors
leaves no doubt about the one-sidedness of their analysis. Maxime
Gauin, who presents Armenia as an anti-Semitic country, himself
publicly supports the ultra-right party of Turkey, the Nationalist
Movement Party. Apart from its stated position supporting the denial
of the Armenian Genocide, that party is known for propagating
anti-Semitism and xenophobia. Yet, Gauin turns a blind eye to this."
Feller further asserts that "Arye Gut has for quite a long time been
at the service of the Azerbaijani propaganda machine, and is a member
of the Azerbaijan-Israel International Association. Alexander Murinson
takes as a reality his doctoral thesis that Azerbaijan, Turkey, and
Israel are an entente alliance -- and develops the idea that the enemy
of one of these states is the enemy of all three."
The head of the Jewish community in Armenia explains that
anti-Semitism exists in every corner of the world, including
Armenia. Such manifestations, according to Mrs. Feller, "never enjoyed
the support either of authorities, or more or less influential social
and political entities. The Jewish community feels itself protected in
Armenia, and the authorities respect their rights, culture, and
Mrs. Feller is also highly critical of Pres. Aliyev: "It is no secret
what methods the dictator of Azerbaijan is using to mold opinions in
the West; in fact, they've been mentioned by many highly influential
publications, such as the New York Times in September 2014 and Foreign
Policy magazine in June 2014. Influential international Jewish
structures should not allow themselves to get involved in such
Mrs. Feller mentions several examples of rampant anti-Semitism in
Azerbaijan. "In the 1990's, when bandits from the People's Front of
Azerbaijan organized and committed pogroms against the Armenian
population in Azerbaijan, one of the slogans used was: `Azerbaijan
will prosper without Jews and Armenians.' No matter how hard the
authorities of Azerbaijan try to present themselves as friends of
Israel, they cannot be friends of the Jewish people. If there is
anyone who doubts this argument, I urge them to read the publications
on the numerous, flagrant human rights violations by the Aliyev
administration, or, at least, the articles on the funding of
anti-Jewish demonstrations in Europe. There is no doubt that
Azerbaijan is using its relations with Iran and Israel, and presenting
itself in Israel as the most reliable regional partner in its policy
against Iran. Clearly, the leaders of Azerbaijan are playing a
dangerous game if they think they will succeed in using Isra
el and world Jewry to promote their personal interests."
The righteous Jewish community leader then condemns Cong. Steve
Stockman (R-Texas) -- who is known for his pro-Azerbaijani views --
for inserting Arye Gut's propagandist article in the Congressional
Record. "This was overtly disrespectful, not only to the voters in
Stockman's district but also to American democracy. The promotion of
ordered and false articles should not be allowed to echo from the
rostrum of America's legislative power. One should not be able to
present hate propaganda and promote the agenda and interests of a
dictator as an expression of freedom of speech, especially when it
uses Jews, in particular, the Jewish community of Armenia."
Feller concludes her article by rightly warning "the Jewish community
of the United States to stay alert and condemn any attempt to exploit
the Jewish factor in such a despicable way by certain political

#84 MosJan


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Posted 28 January 2015 - 05:28 PM

et  ardzan  chgtam...  bayst  vpchinch  mexico city em  gnum shutov  entegh karrogha lini

#85 Yervant1


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Posted 30 January 2015 - 09:55 AM

19:36 30/01/2015 » POLITICS

The Washington Post condemns its colleagues for providing Azerbaijan platform for propaganda

In its issue published on January 29, the newspaper “The Washington Times” has dedicated an entire section to Azerbaijan and to its importance to the US, however, the inscription on the cover of the application of the special report prepared by appropriate department of the newspaper explains that tone - it's just a marketing ploy. Of course, in the news section or comments to the same edition would not have been an ad unit about Azerbaijan, writes blogger Erik Wemple in an article published on the website of “The Washington Post”.
However, in the Column of the Opinions Wemple has also found an article entitled "Why Azerbaijan is important for America and the free world." In the notes below the article it is noted that the author Dan Burton is identified as “a former Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Indiana.

“Perhaps because of space constraints, the italicized tagline omits another credential of Burton’s: His status as the chairman of the Azerbaijan America Alliance,” Wemple writes.

Meanwhile, the author cites an article from Reuters where there’s a real news concerning this wonderful country: “Azerbaijan on Tuesday extended the pre-trial detention of a journalist critical of President Ilham Aliyev, prompting concern from Europe’s democracy watchdog OSCE about ‘rapidly deteriorating’ media freedoms in the ex-Soviet state,” reports Reuters.

Wemple notes that Rosemary Armao, an associate professor of Journalism/Communication at the State University of New York at Albany and a friend of Ismayilova’s, has written a letter to the Washington Times over the Burton column. American aid ought to be on the side of democracy, freedom, and the Azeri people. It must be linked to reforms, greater transparency and, immediately, to the release of Khadija Ismayilova, “Shame on you Rep. Burton for penning a false and deceitful column,” she says noting that there are virtually no independent journalists left in Azerbaijan.

As Wemple informs John Solomon, editor and vice president for content and business development for the Washington Times, says the omission of Burton’s role in the Azerbaijan America Alliance was a mistake. “I wish we’d caught it — my fault,” says Solomon. The Washington Times has updated the story to include mention of Burton’s connection to the alliance.

Source: Panorama.am

#86 Yervant1


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Posted 31 January 2015 - 10:44 AM

16:31 31/01/2015 » SOCIETY

‘Twitter’ microblog of Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev – a new attraction for Internet users

Tweet of the Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev where he says that the shipyard in Azerbaijan already produces ships became a subject of mockeries by the users of social networks. Editor of “Gawker Media” Michael Ballaban shared this tweet in “Jalopnik” blog, accompanying it with the following comment: "Yes, but really, does Shipyard of Azerbaijan produces ship already?"

Aliyev Tweet did not leave the commentators indifferent either. "I cannot figure it out geographically. Azerbaijan has an access to the Caspian Sea, which in reality is just a big lake, then where should actually these ships be sent?", said one of the users, and another added: "I've been to that shipyard! If you're bored and in Azerbaijan, I recommend travel to Kazakhstan by cargo ship."

The Armenian-Azerbaijani relations were also touched during the discussions. "In fact, the biggest problem is that this guy is the Azerbaijani dictator who steals the oil-wealth of the country, and the reason of the anti-Armenian tirade is the only unifying thing that makes the Azerbaijani blood boil," said one of the commentators.

The others were making fun of the President of Azerbaijan and were playing with words. "He will retweet no one, he doesn’t reply to anyone, he doesn’t talk to anyone, he just shoots his thoughts into the dark void of the Internet," said the users.

Source: Panorama.am

#87 Yervant1


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Posted 18 February 2015 - 10:30 AM

18:25 18/02/2015 » SPORT

Protest in Azerbaijan against Armenian sportsmen’s arrival at European Games

Azad Rahimov, the Minister of Youth and Sports of Azerbaijan, recently stated that the security of the 30-50 sportsmen from Armenia arriving to take part in the European Games in Baku, as well as the Armenian delegation, will be ensured. Yet, active discussions concerning the participation of Armenia in the European Games are on in Azerbaijan, such as “Was it worth inviting the Armenians to Baku in the current conditions of the tension at the frontline?” Is that step reasonable from the side of Azerbaijan itself? How will the Azerbaijani society react to that? Akif Nagi, the head of the so-called “Karabakh Liberation Organisation” founded in Baku, touched upon this topic in his interview to the Azerbaijani information site “Moderator.az”.
According to the article, Nagi once again declared that the thought about Baku hosting Armenians doesn’t fit into his logic.
Nagi stated that unlike Rahimov, a number of Ministries and Committees in Azerbaijan have arranged their activities in such a way that no Armenian was present at the important events of governmental level, the article reads.
“Azerbaijan mustn’t give Armenians the opportunity to take part in the upcoming European Games,” protested Nagi.
In October, 2014 during his meeting with the President of Armenia Serzh Sargsyan, the head of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) Thomas Bach assured that IOC and EOC will exert every effort to guarantee the security of the Armenian sportsmen in the country hosting the European Games, that is Azerbaijan. On 5 November in Bangkok, Patrick Hickey, the head of EOC (European Olympic Committee) declared that Armenia will take part in the European Games in Baku and noted that the problems preventing that have already been solved.
The above mentioned so-called “Karabakh Liberation Organization” is notorious for its provocations against the Armenian sportsmen and delegates who arrived in Azerbaijan on different occasions. In July, 2014 a group of the members of this so-called “Karabakh Liberation Organization” held a protest in front of the complex Flame Towers in Baku, where the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly Standing Committee meeting was on. The participants expressed their protest against the participation of the Armenian MPs in the meeting. Earlier in March, they spread a statement threatening to expel from Baku the representative of Armenia in CIS states Armed Forces chief-of-general-staff’s meeting. In 2011 KLO activists got into the sport complex after H. Aliyev and started to throw stones at the Armenian sportsmen who were taking part in the World Boxing Championship. Waiting for the Armenian boxer to come out, they started yelling “Armenians, get away”, “Shame on the inviters”, “Karabakh or death”, unleashing a barrage of stones to the ring.

Source: Panorama.am

#88 Yervant1


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Posted 19 February 2015 - 10:07 AM

19:27 19/02/2015 » SOCIETY

“Der Standard”: Lobbyists of Azerbaijan put in place in European Parliament

There’s nothing new in the fact that the authorities in Azerbaijan have to spend millions of dollars on lobbyists to shape a favourable image for their country and to prevent criticism against the regime. Yet, the resources spent are not able to reach their goal, Azerbaijani newspaper “Azadlig” writes, referring to the article published in the prestigious German outlet “Der Standard”.
According to the article, Teresa Eder, in her article “How authoritarian regimes influence on the EU countries” says that the vice-president of the European Parliament, head of delegation of the Greens group in the European Parliament Ulrike Lunacek gave a negative response to the request of the lobbyists of the Azerbaijani authorities.
“Der Standard” also highlights that, as it is well-known, the European Olympic Games are due in June in Baku, and that’s the very reason why the Azerbaijani authorities planned a propagandistic event in the European Parliament. However, the members of the European Parliament didn’t let these plans come true.
According to the newspaper, the incident was registered in January during the discussions of the report proposed by the “Corporate Europe Observatory”. The report held details regarding the lobbying organisations’ activities of such authoritarian regimes as Azerbaijan, Ruanda, Bangladesh, Bahrain, Nigeria and others, in the territories of the EU countries.
During the discussions of the report, Ivo Ilich Gabara, a British PR-company strategist, pointed out the fact that if someone can afford such astronomical sums for their advertising, then there’s no doubt that the individual in question has many problems.

The author stresses that Ulrike Lunacek, in her turn, touched the topic of “Eurovision” Song Contest in Azerbaijan in 2012 when the official Baku invited the European Parliament Members, paying for their journey and stay.
“At that time many people were expelled from their own homes in Baku during the Contest,” she reminded.
According to the article, Lunacek also raised her concern regarding the frequent visits the members of various Committees of European Parliament pay to Azerbaijan, accepting the Azerbaijani authorities’ offers for their countries lobbying. She said she had herself more that once received that kind of offers by Azerbaijan.
“I have time and again told them that I won’t allow them to press on me. I am very well aware of the problems in Azerbaijan and hence, I can openly speak up about the Azerbaijani political prisoners,” she concluded.

Source: Panorama.am

#89 Yervant1


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Posted 02 March 2015 - 10:07 AM

12:02 02/03/2015 » IN THE WORLD

The Washington Post: Ilham Aliyev is showing signs of frantic despotism

The president of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, is showing signs of a frantic despotism. Journalists, bloggers, lawyers, human rights activists and others who speak out for individual liberty are arbitrarily being swept up in a wave of arrests and detentions. Mr. Aliyev, suffering a decline in the oil revenue that has propped up his regime for years, seems to be striking out at anyone who opposes him, American daily newspaper The Washington Post writes.
“One of Mr. Aliyev’s favorite tools for silencing people is pretrial detention. Azeri law states that it is to be used only in limited cases, and Azerbaijan’s criminal procedure code put this power in the hands of the courts, not prosecutors, more than a decade ago. In practice, though, the courts have become servants of the prosecution. The European Court for Human Rights noted in a case last year that Azeri courts have frequently endorsed prosecution requests for detention automatically,” the newspaper writes.
In the article the examples of the Azerbaijani human rights defender Leyla Yunus and her husband historian Arif Yunus are brought, whose pretrial detention was extended for 5 months by the decision of the court in February, at the end of which they will have been behind bars for nearly a year without trial, despite their problems with health. Meanwhile, the campaign against critical journalists continues. The Washington Post highlights that three days after the detained journalist Khadija Ismayilova’s letter appeared on their outlet, a closed-door trial found her guilty of criminal libel and fined. On the same day as her snap trial, a former chief of the RFE/RL Baku bureau was stopped at the airport and told he was under a travel ban at the request of the prosecutor’s office. More than 26 journalists and staff of RFE/RL have been interrogated by Azeri authorities since a Dec. 26 raid on the Baku bureau.
“In a recent magazine advertisement, Mr. Aliyev said he wanted to make Azerbaijan ‘one of the most developed and competitive countries in the world.’ It certainly won’t become that if he continues to rule like a despot,” the outlet concludes.

Source: Panorama.am

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Posted 07 March 2015 - 07:58 AM

13:24 07/03/2015 » ANALYSIS

Mexico presidential administration representative about why Azerbaijani propaganda shouldn’t be supported for sake of caviar

Mexican local authorities and Azerbaijani government signed an agreement in June 2011 about constructing a Mexico-Azerbaijan Friendship Park where a monument to Heydar Aliyev and events in Khojalu was supposed to be erected, and the government of Azerbaijan was to fund those works of ‘city beautification.’
In October and December 2011 Mexican Parliament called on the government to urge Armenia and Azerbaijan to put an end to their dispute over Nagorno Karabakh and punish those guilty for the events in Khojalu, Office of President of Mexico Representative Francisco Soní Solchaga writes in his article published on the website of the journal Foreign Affairs Latinoamerica. In this way Mexico was pulled into that conflict, and what is worse, supported Azerbaijan without the Mexicans even being aware of where that republic, Khojalu or Nagorno Karabakh are situated, the author writes.
In the historical background of the region, Solchaga notes that at the beginning of the 20th century the Armenians lived in that region on the territories of both the Russian and Ottoman empires. In Ottoman Empire they suffered Genocide in 1915-1920. Consequently, the Armenians are mainly concentrated on the territory of the Republic of Armenia today, though they also maintain an influential Diaspora in the US, France and Russia. The author also highlights that Turkey denies responsibility for the Armenian Genocide which resulted in diplomatic tension between the two countries, as well as between Turkey and European states.
The author writes that the current conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan comes as a continuation of their confrontation over Nakhijevan and Nagorno Karabakh since 1918-1920. After the region was annexed by the USSR, the conflict temporarily calmed down; however the circumstances that had provoked it remained. The Soviet authorities recognized Nakhijevan and Nagorno Karabakh as Azerbaijani territories. Decades later predominantly Armenian population of Nagorno Karabakh started to demand more autonomy, yet Azerbaijan did not accept that.
During 1987 various cases of ethnic violence took place, and when in February 1988 the Parliament of Nagorno Karabakh voted for joining to the Armenian SSR, a forced expulsion of the Armenian population from Azerbaijan began. In March the Supreme Council sent the troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs to the region, yet the violence did not stop, and after the collapse of the Soviet Union Nagorno Karabakh declared its independence. The conflict outgrew into an open war between the unrecognized republic of Nagorno Karabakh (with the unofficial support of Armenia) and Azerbaijan.
In order to promote the negotiation process over the settlement of the conflict OSCE Minsk Group was formed under co-presidency of the US, France and Russia. In May 1994 Bishkek Protocol was signed putting an end to the war. De facto, it passes the control over the main part of Nagorno Karabakh and the surrounding areas to NKR, the author writes drawing parallels with the situation in Kosovo.
The author also notes that the war had serious humanitarian consequences. Among the atrocities committed against the Armenians, the massacres in Sumgait and Baku, as well the Operation Ring – with the help of which the Azerbaijani forces besieged Nagorno Karabakh in 1991 – stand out with their particular cruelty.
“The tragedy in Khojalu is important because Azerbaijan accuses the Armenians of committing genocide. According to Helsinki Watch (present Human Rights Watch: editor’s note), the Azerbaijanis maintained artillery and rocket launchers in Khojalu using them to bomb Stepanakert, the capital of Nagorno Karabakh. Khojalu, like Stepanakert, was a civilian area; however, the Azerbaijanis themselves turned it into a military object making it their firing point. According to the position of Nagorno Karabakh Republic, they had warned the population in Azerbaijan about the operation being prepared in advance and had asked the civilians to leave their homes, though, according to the testimonies gathered by Helsinki Watch, the Azerbaijani population did not think that the Armenians would take a civilian area and remained in their homes. Nonetheless, in the dawn of 26 February, 1992, the Armenians almost completely surrounded Khojalu leaving a free corridor in the direction of a mountain pass, so that the population was able to leave. After that the attack began. The population leaving the village came under fire beyond its boundaries. The lists of the casualties differ from source to source: from 160 people (several human rights NGOs estimates) to more than 600 (the number suggested by the Azerbaijani government),” the author notes.
The Armenian side also cites then President of Azerbaijan Ayaz Mutalibov’s statement who claims that those events could be provoked by the militarized forces of the Popular Front of Azerbaijan (Heydar Aliyev’s political party), who prevented the civilians from leaving Khojalu pursuing the aim to provoke a massacre and bring about Mutalibov’s overthrow, which happened in the following days.
Azerbaijan considers the incident as ‘genocide.’ However, Helsinki Watch established that there were armed uniformed soldiers among the Azerbaijanis leaving Khojalu. “Put in other words, the Azerbaijanis could have been at least co-participants of the tragedy, using the civilians as shield,” Solchaga writes pointing out also to the opinion of Thomas de Waal, an expert on Caucasus, who thinks that the incident was a result of the disorder that emerged during the withdrawal of the troops, rather than a plan to eliminate the population (genocide). Besides, according to the testimony of the Czech journalist Dana Mazalova, they might have manipulated with the incident to make it seem graver.
Citing the example of the situation in the Balkans, the author says that the UN International Court established that the incidents between the Serbs and the Croatians did not constitute genocide as long as their aim was not their elimination, but expulsion. Despite that, the foreign policy of Azerbaijan is pursuing the aim to achieve the recognition of the events in Khojalu during the war in Karabakh as ‘genocide’, forgetting that they have also committed atrocities against the Armenians.
For that reason, the government of Mexico, unlike the Parliament, is maintaining a neutral position regarding the conflict in Karabakh and supports the efforts of the OSCE Minsk Group. It is noted that supporting the Azerbaijani position, Mexico also spoiled relations with Armenia, which became clear when the Foreign Minister of Armenia Edward Nalbandian during his 2012 visit declared that the actions of the Mexican parliament and the City Hall of Mexico were not in accord with the position of the international community, expressed by the Minsk Group, and have negative impact on the relations between Armenia and Azerbaijan. On the other hand, Mexico spoiled relations with Azerbaijan when under justified protests was forced to remove the monument to Heydar Aliyev from the Friendship Park and the word ‘genocide’ from the monument to the victims of Khojalu. Though the threats of Azerbaijan to break up the relations did not become reality, the conflict with that state may have certain consequences.
The author accuses the Parliament and City Hall of Mexico of political short-sightedness as before making that kind of decisions it was necessary to consult the Foreign Ministry of the country and not spoil the image of the state.
“They let themselves to be deceived, and were ready to risk the international prestige of Mexico for trips to Baku, some caviar and 7 million dollars for the beautification of the city without realizing the consequences,” the author concludes.
See also: Azerbaijan putting on hold investment projects in Mexico because of demolition of Heydar Aliyev’s monument 

Source: Panorama.am

#91 Yervant1


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Posted 22 March 2015 - 09:04 AM

Hey Mr. Baboon stop lying to your own people!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

APA, Azerbaijan

March 20 2015

Azeris to "restore historical justice", reclaim lands from Armenians - leader

President Ilham Aliyev has said that Azerbaijan will "restore
historical justice" and reclaim not only the breakaway Nagornyy
Karabakh region and areas around it, which are currently held by
Armenians, but also parts of present-day Armenia. Aliyev made the
remarks while addressing a ceremony to mark Novruz public holiday,
Baku-based APA news agency reported on 19 March.

Aliyev was speaking about the conflict between Baku and Yerevan over
Azerbaijan's Armenian-populated breakaway region of Nagornyy Karabakh,
which, along with the seven districts around it, came under the
control of ethnic Armenian forces in a war in the early 1990s. He said
that "martyrs' blood" should be and is being avenged.

"I am confident that we will achieve our goal, and will restore
historical justice and our territorial integrity. The
Armenian-Azerbaijani Nagornyy Karabakh conflict must be resolved
within the internationally recognized territorial integrity of
Azerbaijan. After that, we, Azerbaijanis, will return to our ancient
lands - Yerevan [Armenia's capital city], Goyca [territories around
Lake Sevan in Armenia], Zangazur [Armenia's Syunik Region], etc. The
younger generation must know that our lands are not limited to the
current territories of independent Azerbaijan. We must go back to
those lands as well and we will. We must do our best to make that day
closer," he said.

"Unfortunately, the Nagornyy Karabakh conflict is still unresolved.
Despite meetings at various levels, Armenia does not give up on its
provocative acts," the president added.

He also spoke about the TANAP regional gas project, whose foundation
was laid in Turkey on 17 March. He said that Azerbaijan has already
ensured its security.

"Gas produced in Azerbaijan is of great importance for the world and
Europe. The ongoing work is increasing Azerbaijan's geopolitical
importance," Aliyev said.

[Groong note: the above was translated from Azeri]


#92 Yervant1


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Posted 18 May 2015 - 09:59 AM

Rima Varzhapetyan slams bias anti-Armenian articles published in
Israeli periodicals

18:29, 16 May, 2015

YEREVAN, 16 MAY, ARMENPRESS. The Head of the Jewish Community of
Armenia Rima Varzhapetyan-Feller wrote an open letter to the American
Jewish Committee Executive Director David Harris related to the
publishing hate speech articles by a number of the "analysts" in the
Israeli periodicals against Armenia, the Armenian nation and her as
the Leader of Jewish community in Armenia.

As "Armenpress" reports, quoting Jewish Journal, the letter runs as follows:

Dear Mr. Harris,

I am making this appeal to you in an open letter to draw your
attention to the fact that during the recent months articles inciting
and propagating hatred towards Armenia and the Armenian people, and to
me, as the leader of the Jewish community of Armenia, are published
regularly in Israeli newspapers by a number of so called analysts -
Arye Gut, Alexander Murinson, Maxime Gauin (e.g. Baku to the future:
Azerbaijan, not Armenia, is Israel's true ally , Anti-Semitism in

Biographies of the aforementioned authors and the content of the
articles prove that they try hard to set public opinion and,
particularly, the Jews, against the Armenian people, casting shadow on
the centuries-old friendship of the two peoples.

Especially worth mentioning is Arye Gut's latest brainchild - an
article built on overtly false facts and attempts of manipulation.

A former citizen of Azerbaijan (he is Jew, not an Azeri), Gut, whose
Facebook account provides ample evidence of his attempts to ensure the
approval of the Azerbaijani authorities, speculates and manipulates
data, positioning himself as allegedly "impartial" analyst.

In this article Gut yet again endeavors to convince the readers of the
existence of anti-Semitism in Armenia and Diaspora. It is worth
mentioning that Gut, Murinson and Gauin have already written nearly a
dozen of articles, trying to provide proof of supposedly numerous
cases of anti-Semitism in Armenia. Nevertheless, the examples they
cite are either false or distorted. No representative of any political
force, political party or NGO in Armenia has ever uttered any
anti-Semitic remarks.

Rights of the Jewish community have never been questioned here. The
Armenian people always have respected the Jews and admired the rich
history of our people. Since time immemorial the Jewish community of
Armenia has found favourable environment for free existence and
enrichment of their culture on this land of rich culture.

The evidence of the Jewish presence in Armenia is a medieval Jewish
settlement and cemetery, both preserved due to Armenian government's
and people's care for it.

Not only does Arye Gut ignore it all, but also dares to voice
poignantly indecent expressions addressed to me and the Jewish
community of Armenia which is nothing but an example of anti-Semitism
in itself.

As Michael Chlenow, Vice-President of the World Jewish Congress,
stressed during the recent Global Forum "Against the Crime of
Genocide" held in Yerevan a couple of weeks ago, "Even if the Jewish
community of Armenia is small, it is well-organized and proud, and
through its activity contributes to both enrichment of the Jewish
culture and strengthening of centuries-old friendship of the two

Armenia has never denied the Holocaust. This year on the International
Holocaust Remembrance Day President Serzh Sargsyan addressed the
Jewish community in a statement. During his visit to the USA in May,
the President of Armenia also visited the Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Armenia is the only country in the region where school curriculum
includes direct reference to the Holocaust; moreover, according to
various assessments, from the point of view of the awareness of the
Holocaust, the Armenians are amongst the best-informed people in the

In his article Gut once again tries to use to his advantage the fact
of cooperation between some representatives of the Armenian Diaspora
and the Nazis during WWII. It is a historical fact that the Armenian
legion did not take part in the combat operations and was stationed in
the rear - mainly in France, Holland and Poland. The Nazi leadership
never trusted the Armenian legion. On December 12, 1942 Hitler said
that "...In spite of all declarations from Rosenberg and the military, I
don't trust the Armenians". The members of the Armenian Legion never
missed a chance to revolt against the Nazis and join the resistance
groups. The Armenian POWs played important role in the liberation of
South France, while another group of Armenian POWs revolted in

Most probably, Arye Gut is also aware that the Azerbaijani legion in
the German Armed Forces was four times larger than the Armenian one.
The Azerbaijani legion participated in a range of massacres of the
Polish and the Jews (particularly, 40.000 people were annihilated
during Volyn massacre). The former President of the Democratic
Republic of Azerbaijan (1918-1920) Mamed Rasulzade, who nowadays is
glorified in Azerbaijan, spared no effort to recruit the Azerbaijani
prisoners of war to the ranks of the Nazi army.

As for the Armenians, they fought against the Nazis in the frontlines
of the Red Army, as well as in Diaspora. More than half a million
Armenians fought in WWII, and only half of them returned home.
Armenian soldiers fought in all the bloody battles, liberating from
the Nazi yoke numerous peoples, including Jews.

As if following a the long-standing tradition, Gut's article
'circulates' the theses of Azerbaijani-Turkish anti-Armenian
propaganda, i.e. the blatant denial of the Armenian Genocide and the
repetition of the official Baku's assessment of events in Khojaly in
1992. What is more, all this is by no means done in a professional
manner. In reality, Mr. Gut would rather quote the then President of
Azerbaijan Mutalibov on the events in Khojaly, who inadvertently
exposed the masterminds and those who even today use these clichés for
propaganda purposes.

I was raised in a Jewish family. From the very first days of war my
father joined up and reached Berlin. He was given numerous military
awards and decorations. Together with her parents and my elder
brother, my mother was evacuated three times. My husband's ancestors,
Armenians, suffered the Genocide in the Ottoman Empire and a
considerable part of the family was annihilated.

My family spares no effort to strengthen the friendly ties between
Armenia and Israel. We wish peace and prosperity to the two countries,
and, of course, all the people on Earth. Unfortunately, shameless
liars and provocateurs like Mr. Gut accuse me of "complicity in
Nazism, Fascism and anti-Semitism".

They must have forgotten that people should think twice before they
utter such remarks - one could be detained for that.

It is inconceivable that leading newspapers and journals publish
rubbish, without thinking of their own reputation.

Dear Mr. Harris, your organization has always emphasized the
importance of strengthening of tolerance between peoples and fight
against hate speech.

Authors of articles, pointed out by me, try to manipulate the Jewish
media and the Jewish community in their dirty and unacceptable
propaganda stunts.

I am grateful to you and proud that for years I have been invited to
participate in the American Jewish Committee Annual Forums, which
always pay a great deal of attention to strengthening of tolerance and
fight against inter-ethnic hatred.

I am full of hope that you will share my concern and together we will
be able to exert joint efforts to resist such provocative behavior.
Sincerely, Rimma Varzhapetyan-Feller, President of the Jewish
Community of Armenia


Rimma Varzhapetyan-Feller,

President of the Jewish Community of Armenia



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Posted 20 July 2015 - 08:53 AM

New Mexico's cozy ties with Azerbaijan
By Dan Boyd
July 19, 2015

SANTA FE--There's nearly 7,000 miles between New Mexico and the former
Soviet republic of Azerbaijan.

But the distance between the two belies an increasing political
coziness--one cultivated by dinner receptions at the Roundhouse and
state lawmakers' trips to Azerbaijan--that has prompted at least
isolated criticism and landed New Mexico in the midst of a
long-running regional feud.

A top-ranking state lawmaker who was one of numerous legislators to
travel to Azerbaijan in recent years as part of official delegations
insists the paid-for trips have been educational and says they have
not been pressured to provide something in return.

"I just think we really have a friendship that has developed between
us," Senate President Pro Tem Mary Kay Papen, D-Las Cruces, said in a
recent interview. "I personally have never felt there was any
obligation (for payback)."

But during each of the past three years, New Mexico legislators have
approved nonbinding memorials extolling the virtues of Azerbaijan and
the ties between the secular Muslim majority country and the Land of
Enchantment. Most of those memorials--including ones approved this
year in both the House and Senate--received unanimous backing and
little debate.

The memorials approved during this year's 60-day legislative session
described the government of Azerbaijan as having fostered an
"environment of tolerance, mutual acceptance and respect" and
commended the country's efforts to counter regional unrest.

"Azerbaijan offers an environment where Muslims, Jews and Christians
enjoy peaceful coexistence and live in dignity and harmony and with
respect for one another," reads Senate Memorial 99, which passed 31-0.
The House version contains similar language.

Although the memorials do not carry legal weight, copies of them were
sent to President Barack Obama, the U.S. ambassador to Azerbaijan and
other elected and appointed officials.

However, Azerbaijan has plenty of critics.

It was recently listed as one of the 10 most censored countries in the
world by the Committee to Protect Journalists, along with North Korea,
Saudi Arabia, China, Iran and others.

"Several critical journalists fled the country in 2014, and those
remaining faced attacks and harassment, were banned from traveling, or
were prosecuted on fabricated charges," the group said in its report.

Amnesty International said in its report on Azerbaijan that
authorities there had imprisoned government critics, journalists and
political activists. The organization also cited reports of torture
and other "ill-treatment" of protesters and opposition leaders.

Papen said Friday that she is aware of the outside criticism but that
she did not think it a reason to cut ties with Azerbaijan.

"If we have countries out there that are trying to be democracies and
are friends with the United States, should we kick them in the teeth?"
Papen told the Journal. "We need to be building better relationships
and friendships, not tearing them down."

Other states courted

New Mexico isn't alone in receiving attention from Azerbaijan, which
has pushed for similar resolutions or memorials in more than 30 states
around the nation.

In fact, a 2014 BuzzFeed report found that Azerbaijan was one of the
top 10 foreign spenders on lobbying in the United States in 2013,
having spent more than $2 million on such efforts.

But policymakers here appear to be particularly interested in
reciprocating that attention.

New Mexico sent 25 delegates, more than any other state, to a 2013
conference titled "U.S.-Azerbaijan Convention: Vision for the Future"
held in the country's capital, Baku, according to a report in the
monthly newspaper The Washington Diplomat.

Papen said "quite a few" state legislators, from both political
parties, have traveled to Azerbaijan in recent years. She said
lawmakers have been invited into homes and returned with a greater
understanding about global relations.

The Legislature does not have a list of lawmakers who have made trips
to Azerbaijan, partly because legislators are not required to obtain
permission for such trips and do not have to file reports for their
travel if they are not seeking reimbursement.

Legislators from other states have also been invited on the 10-day
trips, which are paid for by the Azerbaijan government and touted as
opportunities to build relationships and trade partnerships, according
to a recent Arizona Capitol Times report.

In New Mexico, legislators are barred from receiving gifts worth more
than $250 from certain "restricted donors," but there have been no
allegations that the Azerbaijani government meets that definition.
Azerbaijani-affiliated groups do not appear in the state's index of
registered lobbyists, and a Journal review of campaign finance reports
did not show any contributions to state lawmakers from Azerbaijani

However, the Assembly of the Friends of Azerbaijan reported that about
25 legislators attended a Roundhouse dinner reception held to honor
the anniversary of the 1992 Khojaly tragedy, which Azerbaijan
describes as genocide.

In addition, Nasimi Aghayev, Azerbaijan's consul general in Los
Angeles, posted a picture of himself and Papen in the Senate gallery
with the caption, "With Senator Mary Kay Papen of New Mexico--great
friend of Azerbaijan and all other freedom-loving nations."

Armenian opposition

In New Mexico, the pro-Azerbaijani memorials have largely flown under
the radar in recent years.

Sen. Gerald Ortiz y Pino, an Albuquerque Democrat, told BuzzFeed that
a memorial approved in 2013 at the state Capitol was met with "mostly
blank stares" by legislators who had not visited Azerbaijan.

Meanwhile, Rep. Nora Espinoza, R-Roswell, told a reporter during the
2013 trip to Azerbaijan that communism was still fresh in the minds of
people there, saying, "We in America have forgotten what our
forefathers fought for. But they have lived it."

Espinoza and Ortiz y Pino are among the lawmakers who have sponsored
Azerbaijan-related memorials in Santa Fe, with Papen and Rep. Debbie
Rodella, D-Espanola, the others. Papen was the only one of the
lawmakers who returned a phone call seeking comment for this story.

However, the pro-Azerbaijan memorials have met with resistance in some
other states. Hawaii lawmakers, for instance, rejected a similar
resolution in 2014 amidst opposition from members of the state's
Armenian community.

Armenia and Azerbaijan, which are neighboring countries, have been at
odds for years, due in large part to territorial squabbles and ethnic
tension between Muslim Azeris and Christian Armenians. The conflict
has at times flared--as evidenced by the 1992 Khojaly massacre--and is
still simmering.

Ken Gleria, a member of the Armenian Cultural Association of New
Mexico and church council member of the Armenian Church of
Albuquerque, blasted the Legislature's recent memorials as misleading
and said his attempts to present opposing viewpoints during this
year's session were ignored by leading lawmakers.

"Azerbaijani lobbyists are introducing absurd resolutions throughout
the nation, not because of their veracity or because of deep ties
between Americans and Azerbaijanis, but rather due the well-financed
and influential lobby which has emerged in light of Azerbaijan's
growth as an oil-producing nation," Gleria wrote in a letter to the

Phone calls and an email to the Houston-based president of the
Assembly of the Friends of Azerbaijan were not returned.

Lujan Grisham trip

The 2013 convention in Azerbaijan has already caused problems for one
New Mexico elected official who attended the event.

U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, D-N.M., was named in a Washington
Post report earlier this year as one of 10 members of Congress who
traveled to the country for the conference, which was secretly paid
for by the country's state-owned oil company.

The Albuquerque Democrat reportedly told investigators she thought the
trip was being paid for by nonprofit groups and did not think
Azerbaijani rugs she received as gifts on the trip were valuable or
attractive. In addition, she received approval for the trip from the
House Ethics Committee before she left, a spokesman said in May.

Lujan Grisham and some of her colleagues--a bipartisan group--did not
report the gifted rugs on disclosure forms after returning home.

Other examples of New Mexico's burgeoning alliance with Azerbaijan also exist.

New Mexico State University President Garrey Carruthers, former
governor of New Mexico, signed an affiliation agreement with the
Association of the Friends of Azerbaijan earlier this year.

The agreement calls for scholarship for NMSU students to participate
in the Baku Summer Energy School, sponsored by Exxon Mobil and other
groups. University of New Mexico and New Mexico Tech students will
also be eligible to take part in the summer school, according to an
announcement of the pact.


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Posted 27 July 2015 - 02:16 PM


18:00 27/07/2015 Â" REGION

Azerbaijani Abdulla Abdullayev was found out to be one of the key
'Islamic State' figures in the territory of Turkey, the Turkish media
report, according to the Azerbaijani news portal Haqqin.az.

According to the reports, Abdullayev created an entrepot in Turkey
for the militants from Europe and Central Asia to transfer them to
Iraq and Syria afterwards. The Azerbaijani hired dozens of flats in
Turkey to provide the future IS militants with temporary housing.

As a result of the Turkish law enforcements agencies' special
operation, 36 people were detained. They all had some sort of
connection with Abdulla Abdullayev. The Turkish Police's special
operation against the 'Islamic State' militants was code-named
'Abdullayev,' according to the report.

For years, the Azerbaijani terrorists have long been fighting in
the ranks of various terrorist groupings that operate in Syria,
Afghanistan and Pakistan. There are frequent media reports about the
liquidation of the Azerbaijani terrorists.

The relationship between international terrorist groups and Azerbaijan
originated in the early 1990s. That time, the Azerbaijani army, having
failed in the aggression against Nagorno-Karabakh Republic (NKR),
retreated with losses. Trying to save the situation, the Azerbaijani
leadership, headed by Heydar Aliyev attracted to the war against the
Armenians of Nagorno-Karabakh international terrorists and members of
radical groups from Afghanistan (groupings of Gulbuddin Hekmatyar),
Turkey ("Grey Wolves", etc.), Chechnya (groupings Basayev and Raduyev
etc.) and some other regions.

Despite the involvement of thousands of foreign mercenaries and
terrorists in the Azerbaijani army during the war, the Azerbaijani
aggression against Nagorno-Karabakh Republic failed, and the Baku
authorities were forced to sign an armistice with the NKR and Armenia.

However, international terrorists found ties in Azerbaijan, and used
them in the future. Recruitment was conducted among Azerbaijanis,
who then were sent to Afghanistan and the North Caucasus, where
participated in the battles against the forces of the international
coalition and Russian organizations. In recent years, the citizens of
Azerbaijan are actively involved in terrorist and extremist activities
in Russia, Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq.

Related: American political scientist: Western Intelligence used
Azerbaijan to export terrorism into Russia


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Posted 16 September 2015 - 09:34 AM


Tuesday, 15 September 2015

CANBERRA: The Armenian National Committee of Australia (ANC Australia)
reports that the Federal MP for Bennelong, John Alexander has
delivered a blistering speech on the floor of Parliament after meeting
with a visiting Azeri MP, condemning Azerbaijan's ongoing disregard
for human rights and peace in Nagorno Karabakh.

His statement (click to watch video) was delivered following on from a
meeting - in his capacity as Chair of the House Standing Committee on
Economics - with Khanlar Fatiyev MP, who is visiting Australia as part
of an official Azeri Parliamentary delegation.

After attacking Azerbaijan's capture of human rights activists,
Alexander said: "I also raised my strong concerns about Azerbaijan's
actions in the on-going dispute with Armenia in Nagorno-Karabakh.
Azerbaijan has invested over $1 billion in armoured vehicles and
artillery in the past few years, making a mockery of any supposed
desire for peace in the region."

He added: "As we commemorate the centenary of the commencement of the
Armenian Genocide it is essential for us as community leaders to call
out persecution, and to stress to trading partners like Azerbaijan the
importance of protecting human rights and political freedoms for all."

ANC Australia's Executive Director, Vache Kahramanian remarked: `John
Alexander today spoke truthfully and powerfully on the true character
of Azerbaijan. That country has spent billions around the world in an
attempt to showcase itself as a democracy but actions speak louder
than words.'

`Australia is a country built on the rule of law and on the
fundamental respect for human rights. Azerbaijan has continued to be a
blatant violator of human rights, ranking poorly in global rankings
for consecutive years. Its ongoing aggression towards Armenia and
Nagorno-Karabakh have further added to its sorry state of affairs,'
Kahramanian added.

`Mr. Alexander has had a long track record of setting the record
straight in the Australian Parliament on such important matters.
Australia has been well served by this distinguished leader who speaks
openly and honestly on such important matters,' Kahramanian concluded.



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Posted 23 September 2015 - 09:55 AM

Time to get tough on Azerbaijan
By Richard Kauzlarich and David J. Kramer
Sept. 22, 2015

Almost all the news coming out of Azerbaijan these days is bad. On
August 9, an independent Azerbaijani journalist, Rasim Aliyev, was
beaten and killed. A few days later, civil society activists Leyla and
Arif Yunus were sentenced to lengthy prison terms on
politically-motivated charges. And on September 1, a court sentenced
award-winning journalist, Khadija Ismaylova, to seven and a half years
in jail on absurd charges of tax evasion, illegal business activity,
and abuse of power.

Just this past week, the election-monitoring arm of the Organization
for Security and Cooperation in Europe announced it would not send a
mission to Azerbaijan's upcoming parliamentary elections because of
restrictions the government in Baku tried to impose on the size of the
mission. This will leave the November 1 election without serious
outside monitoring.

Ismaylova is a fearless journalist who has done path-breaking
reporting on corruption in Azerbaijan, much of it linked to the Aliyev
regime. For several years, she has been the target of
government-driven intimidation and blackmail. She was arrested last
year, and her sentencing, after spending more than half a year in jail
awaiting her hearing and verdict, is a devastating--albeit not
surprising--blow to media freedom in Azerbaijan.

Since Azerbaijan's rigged presidential elections in October 2013,
Ilham Aliyev's regime has been on a rampage against any and all
perceived enemies--foreign and domestic. Opposition figures,
journalists, and civil society activists are slandered, investigated,
and treated as enemies of the state. It was only a matter of time
before one of those targets would pay the ultimate price.

Rasim Aliyev (no relation to President Aliyev) died in a Baku hospital
on August 9 after being beaten the previous day by what he said from
his hospital bed was a group of supporters of a soccer player whom he
had criticized on Facebook. It remains unclear whether his assailants
were in fact connected to the soccer player.

Speaking at Aliyev's funeral, investigative journalist Shahveled
Chobanoglu noted, "When people see that police beat journalists and
remain unpunished, they consider it possible to use force against the

"Regardless of who is behind this crime ¦ Rasim's death resulted from
the regime generating chaos and creating opportunities to commit
crimes against journalists," added opposition figure Isa Gambar.

President Aliyev said he considers the murder a "threat to the freedom
of speech and information" and "will personally supervise the
investigation." That's rich coming from the leader of a country that
the U.S.-based Committee to Protect Journalists describes as the
leading jailer of journalists in Europe and Central Asia. The
Representative on Freedom of the Media for the Organization for
Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) counts more than 10 members
of the media in prison or pre-trial detention in Azerbaijan. The
murders of journalists Elmar Huseynov (2005) and Rafiq Taghi (2011)
remain unsolved.

Even those who have fled Azerbaijan under duress continue to face the
heavy hand of the Aliyev regime. Emin Milli, living in exile in Berlin
and director of Meydan TV--an independent Azerbaijani media outlet in
Germany--has received death threats, seen his brother-in-law jailed,
and witnessed 23 of his relatives coerced into making a public
statement accusing him of "betrayal." Three female journalists working
with Meydan TV were briefly detained last week at Baku airport on
their way to a professional training course in Kiev but released soon

In the case of the Yunuses, despite their serious health
problems--Leyla's diabetes and Arif's high blood pressure, which
caused him to collapsed at the sentencing hearing--Leyla received
eight and a half years, her husband seven. The judge also ordered
their assets to be confiscated. Both had been held in jail for a year,
and were allegedly beaten and deprived of necessary medical treatment.
They still face charges of espionage and collaboration with
neighboring Armenia, with whom Azerbaijan has been in long-standing
conflict over the Nagorno-Karabakh region of Azerbaijan, occupied by
Armenia since a full-scale military conflict in the early 1990s. The
conflict resulted in thousands of deaths; tens of thousands of
refugees and displaced people; and 9 percent of Azerbaijan outside
Nagorno-Karabakh occupied by Armenian forces. The Yunuses sought to
promote dialogue between Armenian and Azerbaijani civil society
activists. The message is clear: Anyone who speaks to an Armenian is
guilty of treason by a regime that claims to be the most multicultural
society in the world.

"This trial showed that all of you are afraid of words," Leyla Yunus
declared at the sentencing. "This is why you chose to hold this trial
behind closed doors, not letting any journalists to come in and do
their reporting. You have issued a death sentence for us. Because
neither mine, nor Arif's health will let stay in jail for a long

International reaction to the sentencing of the Yunuses was quick and
outspoken, with various human rights organizations describing the
verdict as a "total travesty" and "shocking and frankly shameful."
Britain's Minister for Europe, David Lidington, called the verdict
"politically motivated." Dunja Mijatovic, OSCE Representative on
Freedom of the Media, tweeted, "Azerbaijan's authorities reach new low
in sentencing of Leyla and Arif Yunus."

The U.S. State Department, by contrast, issued a far weaker statement,
saying the United States was "deeply troubled" by the prison
sentences. In response to the murder of Rasim Aliyev, tthe U.S. issued
a statement from its embassy in Baku; nothing was said in Washington.
The United States was once again "deeply troubled" by Ismailova's
sentencing, according to the State Department deputy spokesman.

Instead of condemning these developments in the strongest terms, the
U.S. recently sent three envoys--Special Envoy Amos Hochstein, Deputy
Assistant Secretary Richard Hoagland, and U.S. Deputy Assistant
Secretary of Defense Evelyn Farkas--to Baku to discuss energy,
Trans-Caspian, and security issues, respectively. Even as the human
rights situation gets worse by the day, Farkas reportedly declared
Azerbaijan a "strategic partner" of the United States.

Quiet diplomacy does not work. Statements indicating the U.S. is
"deeply troubled" by gross human rights abuses have no effect. Visits
by senior U.S. officials are spun as indications of U.S. support for
the regime, whereas those who call out human rights abuses are
denigrated as anti-Azerbaijani, or worse. This sad impasse must be
reversed and fast. Azerbaijani officials engaged in gross human rights
abuses should be sanctioned. Investigations should be launched into
the massive corruption that is central to the Azerbaijani regime. And
political prisoners must be released. Together, the U.S. and the EU
must move beyond words, to actions.

Richard Kauzlarich is adjunct professor at George Mason University and
former U.S. ambassador to Azerbaijan and to Bosnia and Herzegovina.
David J. Kramer is senior director for human rights and democracy at
the McCain Institute for International Leadership and former president
of Freedom House.


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Posted 10 October 2015 - 09:30 AM


18:01 â~@¢ 09.10.15

Italy's national football team is meeting with Azerbaijan on October
10 for a 2016 World Cup qualifier, but that meeting will not be just
a football match, the Italian journalist Anna Mazzone writes in an
article published on Panorama.it.

Only 22 players will not join the game, but there will be more on the
soccer field, says the journalist, raising the problem of Azerbaijan's
fledging democracy and human rights, an area in which she says the
Aliyev regime is always out of game.

"Yes, sports and politics do not go hand in hand, but the soccer
field which will host the match is not like other fields. Things go
bad for tyrant Ilham Aliyev," reads the article.

It comes after the European Parliament passed a resolution strongly
condemning the Azerbaijani regime's wrongdoings against freedom of
speech and thought.

Journalists, bloggers and civic activists periodically face
politically motivated threats and detentions in the country. Aliyev's
diplomacy, which prefers dialogue and negotiations to the "caviar
diplomacy", never fails to flex an iron muscle against the opposition,
demonstrating an absolute indifference to the international community's
repeated calls for ending the violations against individuals and the
civil society.

The Aliyev regime turns a deaf ear to all that, with the tyrant
becoming so furious over the European Parliament's resolutions that
he escalates the military tension against Armenia.

"Aliyev responds to the official documents by Brussels through heavy
artillery," says the Italian journalist, referring to the recent
deadly bombardments of Armenian border villages.

The decision to shut down the OSCE Office in Baku and the reprisals
against the opposition add to that, as the Amnesty International's
recent report reveals.

The more the regime is driven into a corner, the more violent its
reaction; the fact raises concerns over a renewed war at the heart
of the Caucasus, threatening tragic aftermaths to the entire region.

"While Italian commentators are commenting upon the Italy-Azerbaijan
match on Saturday, just remember the Baku regime's threats to jail
Dortmund-Borussia's Henrikh Mkhitaryan in case of seeing him in Baku,"
Mazzone writes.

This is why Italy vs Azerbaijan is not just a match, she adds. What
we will see on the soccer field will be rejected freedoms and violent
assaults against human rights. It would be really nice to inflict a
strike on the regime and hit the tyrant. In that case, Italy will gain
more than just qualifying for the championship, the journalist says,
concluding the article.


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Posted 10 October 2015 - 12:01 PM

They are trying to stop Dortmund-Borussia's Henrikh Mkhitaryan from scoring a goal, meanwhile they forgot the other Armenian Matteo Darmian with the Italian national team who scored a beautiful goal today.

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Posted 17 December 2015 - 10:28 AM


12 hours ago 16/12/15

Rep. Chris Smith

WASHINGTON--Following years of systematic efforts by the Government
of Azerbaijan to eliminate the voices of independent journalists,
opposition politicians, and civil society groups, Helsinki Commission
Chair Rep. Chris Smith (NJ-04) Wednesday introduced H.R. 4264, the
Azerbaijan Democracy Act of 2015, a landmark bill that will deny U.S.

visas to senior members of the Azerbaijani government.

"We recognize that there are important national security and economic
ties that exist between our two countries, but the United States can
no longer remain blind to the appalling human rights violations that
are taking place in Azerbaijan," said Rep. Smith. "Journalists and
activists are routinely arrested and imprisoned; opposition politicians
are in jail and elections are not free and fair; human rights lawyers
have been harassed and disbarred; and religious freedom is under
attack. The Azerbaijan Democracy Act demonstrates that the United
States takes human rights and fundamental freedoms seriously, and that
we will not compromise when faced by a government that represses the
political opposition, the media, and religious minorities."

In addition to denying U.S. visas to senior leaders of the Government
of Azerbaijan, those who derive significant financial benefit from
business dealings with senior leadership, and members of the security
or judicial branches, the Azerbaijan Democracy Act also expresses
the sense of Congress that financial penalties should be considered.

Sanctions could be lifted when the Azerbaijani government shows
substantial progress toward releasing political prisoners, ending
its harassment of civil society, and holding free and fair elections.

"It is unacceptable that senior members of the Azerbaijani government
are free to visit the United States while courageous women and men like
investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova, attorney Intigam Aliyev,
opposition politician Ilgar Mammadov, and activist Anar Mammadli are
locked away in prisons with inadequate access to legal or even medical
assistance," Rep. Smith said. "If they can pay the price for standing
up for human rights, the least we can do is to stand with them."

Rep. Smith is a long-standing advocate for human rights in Azerbaijan.

Following the introduction of today's legislation he will chair a
2PM hearing to examine Azerbaijan's persecution of Ms. Ismayilova,
who was sentenced to 7.5 years in prison in early September.

"We welcome Congressman Smith's leadership in introducing the
Azerbaijani Democracy Act," said ANCA Executive Director Aram
Hamparian. "This measure, aimed first and foremost at protecting
the rights of Azerbaijani citizens, can, in a broader sense, also
potentially contribute to prospects for regional peace, by requiring
that the United States - and our international partners - hold Ilham
Aliyev and his regime accountable. The fact is that Azerbaijan's
domestic repression mirrors its regional aggression. We need to
challenge both.


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Posted 17 December 2015 - 10:42 AM

The Azerbaijan Conundrum

By Liam Hoare
December 16, 2015

[Sure, Azerbaijan is tolerant of its Jews. But that's no reason to
excuse the despotic, human rights-violating regime in charge.]

[Liam Hoare is a freelance writer whose work on politics and
literature has featured in publications including The Atlantic, The
Daily Beast, and The Forward. He is a graduate of University College
London's School of Slavonic and East European Studies.]

Three writers go to Azerbaijan, meet with government officials, and
all come back with a glowing impression of the place. Three makes a
trend--an unfortunate one at that--despite the fact that, by all
accounts, the Jewish community of Azerbaijan is safe and secure, and
exists relatively free of anti-Semitism.

Writing in the Forward, Justin Amler called Azerbaijan and its
Jew-loving Muslims "a beacon of light and hope that the rest of the
Islamic world can only hope to emulate." In Time, Rabbi David Wolpe,
having returned from a five-day tour during which he could walk
"straight into a synagogue, claimed the country to be an "oasis of
tolerance" and a "promising example" for the region. And writing for
The Jerusalem Post, Yael Lerman Mazar of StandWithUs, who was on the
same trip as Rabbi Wolpe, waxed poetic about "democratic" Azerbaijan,
a "proud country" with a "generous government." The number of Jews in
Azerbaijan falls somewhere around 9,000.

These op-eds are nothing if not credulous. Frankly, and especially in
the case of Mazar who seems to have left her critical faculties at the
airport, they're embarrassing. Nothing should justify journalists
conducting public relations for one of the most authoritarian
governments in Europe. If Azerbaijan is an example of anything, it's
how to pull the wool over impressionable visitors' eyes.

Azerbaijan has been in the grip of the corrupt Aliyev crime family for
more than two decades. The last election in November, the "worst in
recent history," saw no debate or mass demonstrations, and an
opposition boycott. Persecution of dissidents has recently escalated;
dozens of human rights defenders, political and civil activists,
journalists, and bloggers have been arrested or imprisoned. One year
ago, the investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova was hauled in on
trumped up charges of libel, tax evasion, and illegal business
activity, and sentenced in a closed trial this September to 7.5 years
in prison. Detained opposition activists have reportedly been
tortured. Kemale Benenyarli of the Azerbaijani Popular Front Party
complained of maltreatment after she was arrested earlier this year
and refused to sign a 'confession' written by the police. "She was
punched, dragged and locked in a cell, where she was kept without food
or water until her trial the following morning," according to Amnesty

For the political opposition, Azerbaijan is not an oasis of tolerance,
nor is it for the LGBT community who are "almost invisible in a highly
repressive society." Isa Sahmarli, a 20-year-old LGBT activist who
committed suicide in January, left behind a note linking his
self-slaughter to pervasive homophobia. The Armenian population were
victims of pogroms in Sumgait and Kirovapat in 1988 and Baku in 1990:
scores killed and injured, homes set on fire and looted. Mazar writes
"there has never been a pogrom in Azerbaijan." Try again.

The instinct at work here among Jewish leaders and pro-Israel
advocates is, I fear, to give Azerbaijan a pass for the simple reason
that the state is good to its Jews, strong on anti-Semitism, and
friendly towards Israel. It's a rare combination, I'll concede, but
that instinct is lazy and sloppy, anti-intellectual and debasing, and
ultimately dangerous. It makes one hostage to myopia and leads to
tawdry apologias for dictatorial regimes.


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