Baku calls on Washington to avoid double standards
By Sara Rajabova
Azerbaijani official called on U.S. State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki not refer to double standards and biased information in her speeches.
Azer Gasimov, Press-Secretary of the Azerbaijani president made the remark in his interview to local media on Psaki’s allegations of human rights violations in Azerbaijan, AzerTag news agency reported.
Psaki said in a daily briefing on December 1 that her country is deeply concerned about recent restrictions on civil society activities in Azerbaijan and urged Baku to respect the universal rights of its citizens and allow them to freely express their views.
“First of all, I’d like to say that Psaki frequently makes unprofessional statements full of false facts and geographical mistakes about the developments in different regions. Therefore, I was not surprised by her making such statements on Azerbaijan. I would advise her to pay attention to the human rights being flagrantly violated, fundamental rights and freedoms ignored in her country, instead of issuing biased, dishonest statements regarding alleged failure to comply with international obligations in the field of human rights in Azerbaijan,” Gasimov said.
He went on to say that cases of racial discrimination, police violence against peaceful protesters, use of force, even deployment of military equipment to the streets, use of tear gas, torture and mass arrests often take place in the different regions of the United States. “The events that occurred in dozens of U.S. cities over the Ferguson incident clearly prove this once again,” Gasimov said.
Gasimov further noted that the U.S. also has big problems related to freedom of speech. “Representatives of mass media are regularly facing pressures for voicing objective opinions or even dismissed from their job. We can mention plenty of facts about the violation of fundamental human rights and restrictions on freedoms in the United States,” he said.
He stressed that despite gaining independence 20 years ago and living in a state of war due to Armenian aggression, Azerbaijan has made great progress toward democratic development and the government is continuously increasing its efforts in this area.
Armenia occupied over 20 percent of Azerbaijan's internationally recognized territory, including Nagorno-Karabakh and seven adjacent regions, after laying territorial claims against its South Caucasus neighbor that caused a brutal war in the early 1990s. Long-standing efforts by U.S., Russian and French mediators have been largely fruitless so far.