“Azerbaijan has made very great progress toward building a democratic society and nobody can deny it.” Head of Political and Public Affairs Department at the Azerbaijani Presidential Administration Ali Hasanov told in his interview to AzerTac commenting on an article by Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland published in The Guardian on the state of human rights and judiciary in Azerbaijan, the last pardon decree of the Azerbaijani President, the establishment of a working on the issue of prisoners and other steps, SIA reports.
According to Ali Hasanov , Azerbaijan isn’t inferior to any member states of the Council of Europe in terms of building a democratic society, ensuring human rights and freedoms, also implementing democratic reforms in judiciary. Azerbaijani legislation conforming to the international standards fully ensures sustainable development of civil society, freedom of expression and information, freedom of assembly and effective protection of human rights. As you know, Azerbaijan has a three-tiered judicial system and is observing the jurisdiction of the European Court on Human Rights as a member country of the Council of Europe. Currently, it is the most perfect mechanism to ensure the protection of human rights,” he said.
Mr Hasanov also added that Azerbaijan is a model for its activity, initiative and principal position in the international organizations including the Council of Europe as well and fulfills all its duties and responsibilities.
“We consider the Council of Europe as a platform and tribune where we can develop our foreign relations, strengthen our current capacity through the effective cooperation with the member states, contribute to the strengthening of the formed system of international relations, take an active part in the European processes, defend our national interests and bring the truthes to the world community. And respectively, we expect from the EU administration and the member states an adequate attitude toward Azerbaijan. It is disappointing to note that in most cases, several leading international organizations, including the Council of Europe act as means of pressure of some forces on the member states. Artificial exaggeration of the so-called issue of “political prisoners”, attempts to dishonor Azerbaijan with unfounded and biased statements not only undermine the cooperation within the framework of the Council of Europe, but distract it from performing its mission and shatter the confidence toward the organization. I think that some of the statements in the article by Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjørn Jagland are the results of certain anti-Azerbaijani forces’ influence and nothing more than ungrounded subjective judgments,” Hasanov added.