Baku, November 3, AZERTAC
The NGOs of Azerbaijan have made an appeal to International Freedom of Expression Exchange (IFEX), International Press Institute, Committee to Protect Journalists, Reporters without Borders, International Federation of Journalists, European Federation of Journalists, International News Safety Institute, International Media Support and Article 19 in connection with the pressuring of international media outlets and journalists objectively covering the military aggression of Armenia against Azerbaijan.
The appeal reads:
“We would like to inform you that between September 27 – October 31, 2020, 91 civilians were killed and 404 were injured as a result of Armenia's ballistic and prohibited cluster missile attacks on Azerbaijani cities and regions far from the combat zone. Such war crimes committed by Armenia have been widely covered by the world media.
However, the Armenian diaspora threatens and puts serious pressure on media outlets, journalists and public activists who cover the truth about the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict, disseminate objective information, and even demonstrate a neutral position and do not meet the interests of Armenia and the Armenian diaspora. The Armenian lobby is threatening with death, pressurising and insulting journalists who take an objective and neutral position on the conflict, trying to suppress free speech.
One such example is about the report by Ms. Liseron Boudoul, a journalist of the French TF1 channel. Thus, during her visit to Azerbaijan, Ms. Boudoul witnessed Armenia's artillery and missile fire on our civilians in Ganja, Barda, Tartar and other densely populated areas, preparing an objective report on this.
Following the report, members of the Armenian lobby in France launched a total attack and pressure on Ms. Liseron Boudoul and TF1, threatening to kill the journalist. As a result, TF1 was forced to stop broadcasting the report and delete it from the system.
Ms. Carlotta Gall, a correspondent for the New York Times in Istanbul, was similarly subjected to moral and political terror by Armenians. Thus, the newspaper's editorial office and the journalist faced serious pressure and threats from the Armenians for covering the massacre of the civilian population of Azerbaijan with a ballistic missile by Armenia.
One of the most concerning and surprising facts is the growing number of open threats by the Armenian lobby to the balanced report on the Armenia-Azerbaijan conflict and lack of adequate reaction against the backdrop of the characterization of the caricature of the prophet of one of the world's three heavenly religions by the French magazine “Charlie Hebdo” as a freedom of speech.
We are deeply concerned about the fact that the Armenian lobby has declared open war on freedom of speech, expression, and the principles of objectivity, impartiality of and unbiased journalism.
We believe that the attempts of the Armenian lobby to silence the independent media around the world should concern you, first of all, as international media institutions, and you should openly protest against this illegality.
As NGOs working on protection of the rights of journalists and the media in Azerbaijan, we call on you to protest against such incidents and to prevent the Armenian lobby's attempts to silence free speech.”