OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media welcomes release of Azerbaijani journalist Mehman Aliyev, calls for all charges to be dropped

WARSAW, 11 September 2017 - OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Harlem Désir today welcomed the release of prominent Azerbaijani journalist and media expert Mehman Aliyev.

"I welcome this positive step on the part of the authorities and call on them to drop all charges against Mehman Aliyev," Désir said. "I value the dialogue on this situation in which we have engaged with Azerbaijan as an important way to resolve media freedom issues. It should continue."

Today, the Yasamal district court decided to release Aliyev, who has been in pre-trial detention since 24 August, and reportedly placed him under police supervision while under investigation.

The Representative further reiterated his hope that the privately-owned news agency Turan, of which Aliyev is the director, would shortly be allowed to continue to work and contribute to media pluralism in the country.

Earlier Désir had voiced his concern over Aliyev"s case and called on the authorities to release the journalist during the course of the investigation (see http://www.osce.org/fom/336621).

Désir also stressed that his Office will continue to follow the case closely and that it remains ready to assist Azerbaijan in improving media freedom and journalists" safety throughout the country.-0-

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