editor facing slander and insult charges

In Azerbaijan, editor of an online news website sozcu.az, Elshan Alisoy is facing slander and insult charges and a hefty fine. The charges leveled against the editor are related to the claims, raised by the Vice President of SOCAR [Azerbaijan State Oil Company] Mikayil Ismayilov.  The vice president’s demands include a 100,000 AZN compensation [58.8 […]

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Azerbaijan to license online TV channels

In January, 2021, Az-Net Watch covered the new legal development concerning media freedom environment in Azerbaijan. At the time, it was announced, that a newly established Azerbaijani Agency for Media Development will replace, marred by corruption allegations, the State Support Fund for Mass Media Development and that a new media law was drafted by the Administration […]

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6 journalists and bloggers behind bars in Azerbaijan

On June 8, Justice for Journalists issued a statement in support of jailed media workers worldwide.  The Justice for Journalists Foundation and its Media Risk Map partners monitoring attacks on media workers in the post-Soviet space call on international organisations and governments of all countries to do their utmost to secure the early release of all incarcerated media workers […]

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Legal analysis of a COVID tracing app released last year in Azerbaijan

This is part three in a series of detailed legal reports and analyses on existing legal amendments, and new legislation affecting privacy, freedom of expression, media, and online rights in Azerbaijan and their compliance with international standards for freedom of expression.   In July, of last year, authorities in Azerbaijan released their very own COVID tracing […]

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former political prisoner receives death threat over social media

Rufat Safarov, who heads the Defense Line, an Azerbaijani non-governmental organization said he received death threats from Nasir Asgarov on Facebook, Meydan TV reports. According to Meydan TV, Savarov received a message from Asgarov on Facebook asking him for his phone number and demanding to meet. When Safarov declined the request, Asgarov sent death threats […]

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Azerbaijan takes stock of Turkey’s social media law

In recent years, as social media platforms gained popularity among Azerbaijani users to express concern and criticize the ruling authorities, the government officials were quick to react. At several meetings of the national parliament, members voiced opinions about the need to control social media platforms. In May the discussions were back on the table. According […]

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Amnesty International statement calls to stop gender-based reprisals in Azerbaijan

On May 12, Amnesty International released a statement calling to stop gender-based reprisals in Azerbaijan.  “Women human rights defenders have faced threats, coercion, violations of their right to privacy and smear campaigns that are gender-specific and target them as women. This type of gender-based violence and discrimination aims to silence their critical voices and discredit […]

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man beaten over social media post [update April 30]

[Update] The spokesperson for the Ministry of the Interior Ehsan Zahidov said following the investigation, all men identified in the video were arrested and questioned. The men were family members of the soldier mentioned in the original tweet.  In Azerbaijan, a man was beaten over a social media post that was not even his. On […]

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Beating and administrative detention for a TikTok video

A resident of Gushchu village of Shamakhi administrative district in Azerbaijan was taken to the police, beaten, and handed ten-day administrative detention after posting a TikTok video, according to Meydan TV.  In an interview with Meydan TV, Akif Niftaliyev said he mentioned the local police officers, coming in for a raid and collecting bribes. “I […]

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Azerbaijan keeps blocking access to key independent news platforms – OONI April report

According to latest measurements carried out by OONI, access to a number of key news sites remains blocked in Azerbaijan.  In its latest report that covers the period from January through April, OONI concludes, there is “a strong signal that specific censorship techniques are adopted to block access to these specific media websites.” One noteworthy […]

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