INSTITUTE FOR REPORTER’S FREEDOM AND SAFETY STATEMENT

October 12th, 2009
The Institute for Reporter’s Freedom and Safety (İRFS) applauds the first interview of Azerbaijan Republic President Ilham Aliyev to local media outlet Azerbaijan State Television (AzTV) since 2003.

Ilham Aliyev gave an exclusive interview to AzTV for 23 minutes after CIS countries’ summit in Kishinyov (Moldova), October 8.
IRFS believes that this step of Ilham Aliyev will melt the “ice” between the president and the local media of Azerbaijan and support the government-media relations.
IRFS hopes that the president of the country will give interviews not only to AzTV but also to other TV and Radio channels, as well as to independent and opposition media representatives from now on. IRFS also calls on the presidential administration to hold regular meetings between Ilham Aliyev and electronic and print media representatives.
IRFS recalls that the late president Heydar Aliyev met with Azerbaijan’s local media representatives regularly and answered their questions.
IRFS considers I.Aliyev’s regular meetings with local media representatives a good example for other state officials, and a possible result is that other state officials would meet with journalists to share important information for society.