Açiq mənbələrdən foto.

Açiq mənbələrdən foto.

Baku/07.03.23/Turan: New measures of administrative responsibility for violation of the media law have been established in Azerbaijan. They are provided for by the amendments to the Code of Administrative Offenses adopted today in the third reading.

Thus, for violating the rules established by law for publishing a refutation, response and amendments, officials will be fined from 300 to 600 manats, legal entities - from 1000 to 1500 manats.

In accordance with another amendment, for disclosing the source of information in cases not provided for by law, a fine of 200-300 manat is imposed on individuals, 500-700 manat on officials, 2000-3000 manat on legal entities.

For obstructing the distribution of media products in accordance with the law, the fine for individuals will amount to 200 - 300 manat. Previously, such an offense was punishable by a fine of 100-150 manats. A fine of 300 to 600 manats is imposed for illegal interference in the professional activities of journalists.

A fine of 300-500 manats is imposed for refusing to provide an answer to a journalistic request within the time limit established by law. Previously, the fine for such a violation was 200-300 manats.

Media law expert Alesker Mammadli was skeptical about the innovations in terms of their effectiveness. According to him, the legislation already had a norm on fines for refusing to respond to a request from journalists, but it was not applied in practice.

Even when, in 2022, the Ombudsman decided to violate the law on the fact of refusing to provide a response to a journalistic request, the court canceled it. In cases where the court satisfies journalists' complaints about the refusal to provide an answer, these verdicts are not executed.

According to him, the legislation had previously included norms of administrative punishment for hindering the work of a journalist. But they were never used. For example, until now, more than one police officer has not been punished for interfering with journalists filming at protest actions.

The expert also touched upon the issue of punishing journalists for publishing information that is not subject to disclosure. He considers it wrong to make a decision on administrative responsibility on this issue by prosecutors, without conducting a judicial investigation.

At the same time, the fine for such an offense is set at 3 thousand manats, which is a large sum against the background of low profitability of media subjects. This will play a deterrent role for the media and restrict its freedom. ----16B06----

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