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OSCE representative concerned about violence against journalists in Azerbaijan

OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Desir said he regrets the detention, violent incidents and ill-treatment of journalists last night during a protest in front of the CEC in Baku, Turan reported.

According to him, this is especially unacceptable, as journalists covered events of public interest related to the consequences of the recent legislative elections.

At least eight journalists who work as freelancers or participate in various media, including Azerbaijan’s Voice of America, RFE / RL and Meydan TV, were abused, detained or assaulted by side of law enforcement officials during the crackdown on the protest in Baku on Tuesday.

Desir noted reports that the editor of the Bastainfo.com online platform, Mustafa Hajibeyli, was severely beaten, journalist Ainur Elgunes received a hit in the head, and journalist Sevinch Vakifkyzy received hits to the face and a hand injury.

The representative has urged the authorities to promptly investigate these incidents, prosecute all those responsible and provide appropriate remedies for the victims.

The media have the right to cover public events, and law enforcement agencies must respect and protect the right of journalists to freedom and safety at any time, he added.