BAKU: Arif Mammadov: There Will Be A Meeting In Baku With Presence O

ARIF MAMMADOV: THERE WILL BE A MEETING IN BAKU WITH PRESENCE OF VENICE COMMISSION IN EARLY OCTOBER

Azeri Press Agency
Aug 22 2007
Azerbaijan

"Lord Russell-Johnston has suspended his activity at Subcommittee on
Nagorno Karabakh conflict due to his retirement

Azerbaijan’s Permanent Representative to Council of Europe, Ambassador
Arif Mammadov’s interview to APA.

-PACE Monitoring Committee rapporteur Andres Herkel said that he will
raise an issue on the current state of Azeri media…

-Yes, he did, but the issue is not yet on the agenda. We would have
been informed if there had been such an issue. Maybe co-rapporteurs
made speech at committee or sub-committee. It is not expected that
any issue on Azerbaijan would be discussed at PACE fall session.

-Will issue on Azerbaijan’s implementing European Court’s decisions
be discussed?

-We have enough time for this issue. There is no threat of raising
any issue in this case. We are for documents on the implementation
of new decision. The issue is not on the agenda.

-What about talks between Venice Commission and Azerbaijani government
on the Election Code and law on freedom of assembly"?

-There will a roundtable in Baku early in October with the presence
of Venice Commission. The talks will focus on the composition of
election commissions and procedures of considering complaints. I can
say that negotiations are underway at present. High-level experts of
President’s Office, parliament and Central Election Commission are
involved in this issue, individual talks are underway.

-What is your assessment of Ago group’s still considering Azerbaijan
in the list of countries under monitoring?

-AGO group has visited Azerbaijan recently, the group working normally
regarding Azerbaijan, and major steps have been taken. The group
gives recommendations and we are closely cooperating. This is very
important for us. I want to mention that post-monitoring procedures
exist for Eastern European countries. It means that if our cooperation
with this group is suspended and all the commitments are fulfilled,
post-monitoring procedures will continue. We are not yet going to
stop cooperation with the Group.

-Will Council of Europe senior officials visit Azerbaijan?

-Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Thomas Hammerberg
is scheduled to visit Azerbaijan on September 2-8 this year. The
Commissioner will visit Sumgayit and Ganja in the framework of his
visit. I will also participate in this visit, and then he will draw
up a report.

-PACE President Rene van der Linden’s tenure expires in January,
2008. Who is the real candidate for this post?

-Chairman of PACE delegation (Russian Duma) Michael Margelov’s
candidacy is on the agenda, I think. He is much likely to be elected
to this post, as his candidacy is supported.

-Are there any new reports regarding Nagorno Karabakh Subcommittee
members’ visit to the region?

-Armenians did not attend the last meeting of the subcommittee on
Nagorno Karabakh chaired by Lord Russel-Johnston. CE was dissatisfied
with it. We did not protest the committee members’ visiting region,
we always actively participated in the work of the Subcommittee. But
Lord Russel-Johnston has already stopped his activity due to his
retirement. Therefore, this issue is due to be delayed. The visit is
delayed as there is no agreement in the negotiations for the settlement
of the Nagorno Karabakh conflict yet. Armenia is demonstrating a very
unconstructive position in this issue.

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