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OSCE Urges Azerbaijan to Uphold Human Rights Amidst Surge in Arrests


OSCE Urges Azerbaijan to Uphold Human Rights Amidst Surge in Arrests

Robin Wagener, the head of the OSCE PA delegation and a government commissioner for civil society issues in Eastern Europe, has issued a stern call demanding Azerbaijan to safeguard human rights amidst an alarming rise in arrests targeting journalists, civil society activists, and opposition politicians.


Expressing deep concern over the escalating number of arrests, Wagener emphasized the critical role of press freedom and the active participation of civil society as fundamental pillars of a democratic society.


"The recent surge in arrests of journalists, civil society activists, and opposition figures in Azerbaijan is deeply troubling. The freedom of the press and the engagement of civil society are cornerstones of a thriving democracy," stated Wagener in a statement shared on his X account.


Citing Azerbaijan's membership in the Council of Europe, Wagener highlighted the country's obligation to uphold and protect human rights, democracy, and the rule of law. He emphasized that as a member of this council, Azerbaijan is bound by commitments to ensure the preservation of these fundamental principles.


The call for action comes amid growing apprehension within international circles regarding Azerbaijan's crackdown on dissenting voices. Recent events have witnessed a notable increase in arrests targeting journalists, civil society advocates, and political opposition members, prompting widespread concerns about the state of freedom of expression and democracy within the country.


Wagener's insistence on Azerbaijan's responsibility to safeguard human rights aligns with the core values and commitments expected of a member state within the Council of Europe. The appeal seeks to remind Azerbaijan of its obligations and calls for immediate measures to uphold democratic principles, including freedom of the press and the active participation of civil society, vital for a robust and inclusive democratic society.


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