Despite the difficulties  "Azadlig" remains  faithful to the principles of a free press, editor

Despite all the difficulties and the pressure , the newspaper "Azadlig" remains true to the principles of a free press, and  serves the truth. The  position of the newspaper is a measure of the general situation with the press freedom in Azerbaijan, said deputy chief editor of "Azadlig" newspaper Rahim Hajiyev  in an interview Cətin Sual of Turan agency on the occasion of National Press Day. "Unfortunately today, Media Day,  and  we again meet it under dire situation  which  has been lasting for many years: it arrests and beatings of employees, astronomical legal penalties, obstacles in distributing the newspaper. One of the leading journalists of the country, Seymour Hazy, who was arrested and convicted on trumped-up charges of hooliganism, is still in jail.  Due to financial problems, the newspaper owes its employees salary of more than 100 thousand manats, and the newspaper is  published only thanks to their dedication," said Hajiyev.

He noted also that "Azadlig" is deprived of financial support from the state, which is generously distributed among short-run and pro-government newspapers. In a normal democratic state, the press should not require government assistance. The media should be able to work as a business structure , and themselves earn on circulation and advertising.

"The newspaper" Azadlig "for many years  has been deprived of these sources, as businesses have banned advertising in our newspapers," he said.

The process of economic strangulation has been going on for a long time; at the end of the 90s. 70% of the media were independent, but today most of them work  for the government, unable to withstand the pressure.

"It is a pity that a free media community has already become a small force. However, a few conscientious journalists continue their struggle, and  there is a demand for them in  society.

Daily visits to the online version of the newspaper "Azadlig" makes tens of thousands of original IP,  it means  the needs of people in the free press, interest in an independent and objective sources," said Hajiyev.-06D-

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