Journalists face police pressure during Public Chamber picket

May 25th, 2012
During the May 24th picket by Public Chamber, police and plain-clothed agents prevented journalists from carrying out their professional activity.

Public Chamber activists were forced into police cars and buses, and taken away when they tried to approach the Public TV building. Police officers and plain-clothed agents behaved aggressively towards protesters.
During the picket, Gundalik Telegraf newspaper reporter Bayram Isgandarli was detained. The police interfered with the work of Turan News Agency reporter Etimad Budagov, Objective TV correspondents and other media representatives. Representatives from various international organizations were present as observers.  International journalists were also there, filming the events. Public TV employees filmed from inside the building.
The picket was planned in protest against Public TV’s violation of the principles of political pluralism and freedom of expression. The Public Chamber believes that the Public TV is breaching the principle of freedom of expression, undertaken before the European Broadcasting Union. It is failing to operate in compliance with the obligations set by the Council of Europe. The Public Chamber has demanded more airtime for the opposition, and they condemned the Public TV for serving for the authorities rather than the public.