Osman Gunduz: Freedom House ratings are fair

Freedom House has recognized Azerbaijan as a country with a partly free Internet space, according to the president of the Center for Information Technologies, Osman Gunduz.

In an interview with Objective TV, he noted the tendency of "pulling the plug". In particular, he mentioned that the Parliament adopted amendments to laws that restrict access to information about the founders of commercial organizations, and their share in the  registered capital. Now all financial and fiscal organizations hide any relevant information on the grounds that  it is a "trade secret."

In November Azerbaijan will host the World Forum on Internet Governance. Calling itself a leader in the field of IT, the country should lessen censorship of online content, not use Internet cafes to identify users, and not arrest politically active Internet users on trumped up charges, he said.

At the same time,  Gunduz noted some positive aspects in free access to broadband Internet and expansion of the data card zone . "Now the technical situation has improved. However, there is monopolization of communications by the government. So far,  there are still governmental providers  in Azerbaijan. Until recently the  Ministry of Communications supported the high price of Internet service, not allowing private traders to reduce it. Due to  mitigation of this policy, the number of users has increased by 50%, and is approaching four million," he said. -17D— 


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