TODAY.AZ / Politics

Three-day seminar on “Dialogue between the governmental representatives of Azerbaijan and media” subject ended with signing agreement memorandum

14 July 2005 [09:24] - TODAY.AZ
A three-day seminar on the “Dialogue between the governmental representatives of Azerbaijan and media” subject organized by the Media Department of the Council of Europe (CE) and President’s Office (PO) ended with signing agreement memorandum in the International Press Center yesterday.
The participants of the seminar taking into consideration the discussions held in the seminar considered important existence of the durable dialogue between the governmental organs and mass media for the purpose of informing the public about the questions interesting it and having public significance.

Adoption of the bills “About information freedom” and “About diffamation” in accordance with the CE standards, making changes and additions to the bill “About mass media”, providing holding a periodical exchange of views between the governmental representatives and mass media and realization of other questions are intended in the understanding memorandum. Monitoring of the memorandum will be realized by the Press Council and National TV and radio Council. The participants of the seminar also adopted the behavior codex of the mass media organs in the election campaigns. Mass media’s lightening the election campaign in accordance with the Election Code and rules of the Central Election Commission and except paying advertisement, not demanding or taking payment in any form from any political party, election bloc or other juridical and physical persons in return for their taking part in TV, radio and press are reflected in the intention codex.

The Press Council, National Teleradio Council and Central Election Commission will control together following of the codex. The director of the public-political department of PO Ali Hasanov said that both documents have great significance. According to his words, most of the paragraphs intended in the memorandum concerns to the electron media. The chairman of the Broadcasting Council of the Public Television (PTV) Jahangir Mammadli informed that if about 30 % of the paragraphs reflected in the documents are observed, the society will profit by it very much. The general director of PTV Ismayil Omarov informed that they will be an example for other mass media organs for the principle of observing the memorandum. The representative of the Media Department of CE Lee Hibbard said that the document will be signed on a voluntary basis. According to his words, achieving such agreement in the pre-elections period can be effective. The memorandum was primarily signed by the “AzerTaj”, “APA”, “Olaylar” Information Agencies, “Express”, “525-ji gazet”, “Sharg”, “Zerkalo”, “Merkez”, “Azerbaijan”, “Khalg gazeti”, “Gunseher” papers and “Space” TV. We should note that the document was not signed by the mass media organs which are considered closer to the government and the press of the radical opposition. A.Hasanov informed that the list will be open during some days and any mass media organ can sign the document: “It is a pity that the radical opposition did not participate in the last day of the seminar. This also affects the question. But I do not consider that they will not join this memorandum. I do not see any other alternative way of adopting this document. Punishing someone is not considered here. We only give advices”.

The editor-in-chief of the “Gunseher” paper Arif Aliyev informed in his explanation to APA that there is not any problem in document’s being signed by the opposition. According to his words, in case the electron mass media which is considered closer to the government signs the memorandum, then the press of the radical opposition will also sign the document: “If the government is able to make the televisions sign the document, there will be no problem”.

Though the editor-in-chief of the “Baku Khabar” paper Aydin Guliyev did not exclude in his explanation to APA that they will sign the memorandum, he expressed his displeasure about the level of the measure. According to his words, the editor-in-chiefs of the oppositionist papers were not included in the rank of the main rapporteurs and they did not take part in preparation of the document.

The first deputy of the editor-inc-chief of the “Azadlig” paper Ali Rza said that he does not believe that the understanding memorandum will give real result. A.Rza informed in his explanation to APA that the organized seminar is a grant project for the government: “The government tries to convince the international arena of something by organizing this seminar. We saw such meetings many times. Signing of any document does not change anything. At first, the persons who violate normal relations must sign this document”.

The deputy of the editor-in-chief of the “Yeni Musavat” paper Azer Aykhan also said that he does not believe that by signing the memorandum the relations will be regulated: “If the mass media being under the control of the government is orderly, then he normal conditions can be the topic of discussion”.


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