BAKU: Caucasus: “Freedom House report unfair”

Caucasus: “Freedom House report unfair”

Published: 8.04.2005
AssA-Irada, Baku,

The rating on Azerbaijan indicated in the recent Freedom House report is
unfair. The criteria taken into consideration in preparing the report are
unclear, Ombudsman Elmira Suleymanova told a press conference on Tuesday.

The Freedom House organization, in its “Freedom in the World” index based on
a 7-point scale, rated Azerbaijan as “not free”, with 6 points on political
rights and 5 points on civil liberties.

Armenia, which has occupied Azerbaijani territories, was rated as ‘partly
free’, with 4.5 points.

Another contradictory issue was the fact that the report also included the
self-proclaimed “Nagorno Karabakh Republic”, not recognized internationally,
rating it as “partly free”.

The Milli Majlis (parliament) speaker Murtuz Alasgarov said the report is
biased, regarding as unfair the fact that Azerbaijan was rated below Armenia
and Georgia.

“Is the level of democracy in Azerbaijan behind that of Georgia and
Armenia?”

The speaker said that the inaccurate data in the report is related to the
false statements made by the opposition, and called on its representatives
to consider Azerbaijan’s interests.

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