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Aflatun Sharifov, general director of the Teleradio Production Association of the Ministry of Communications and High Technologies has sued the Vetendash Hemreyliyi (Citizen Solidarity) newspaper, Ibrahim Guliyev, chief editor of the paper told the Institute for Reporters’ Freedom and Safety (IRFS) today.
He said that Aflatun Sharifov has filed a claim with Yasamal district Court, demanding that the newspaper, its chief editor and the person who has passed this information to the press pay him 125,000 AZN collectively (50 thousand, 50 thousand and 25 thousand respectively) as compensation and provide refutation for the articles that have “undermined his honor and dignity, and business reputation.”
“In the statement of claim, Aflatun Sharifov accused mainly me and the newspaper. He blames us for spreading misinformation and libeling him, referring to the article ‘Aflatun Sharifov boycotts elections’ which was about him boycotting 2013 presidential election. He also requires that Teymur Mammadzade, who passed this information to the Vetendash Hemreyliyi, pay him 25,000 AZN. Teymur Mammadzade worked at the Teleradio Production Association at the time of presidential election. During elections, he represented the Citizens Solidarity Party as the member of precinct #4 of the Constituency Election Commission #23. Before publishing the information that resulted in Aflatun Sharifov’s claim, I phoned him to get his comments on it, but he declined to speak,” said the editor-in-chief.
Guliyev added that in August of 2013 he sent this information to the Ministry of Communications and High Technologies, and in October to the Prosecutor General’s Office and the Anti-Corruption Office, asking them to investigate the alleged facts and inform the editorial office about the results, but none of the state structures replied to their official letter.
Note that the Vetendash Hemreyliyi is published since 1994.