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Azerbaijan: abundance of oil and lack of freedom – Le Monde

04:53, 26.05.2012 Region: World News, Azerbaijan Theme: Politics, Economics

Armenian presents a piece of Guillaume Perrier’s article published in Le Monde:

Azerbaijan, being a country of police dictatorship, is among the press freedom predator countries. Currently seven reporters are in custody.

On March 4, 2011, several young activists tried to organize a demonstration in the center of Baku supporting the democratic riots in the Arab world but the police stopped the demonstration. Several hundred people who participated in the demonstration were arrested. The regime fears that such movements will spread throughout the country.

All the major world powers wish to get the resources of Azerbaijan, especially Europe, for which the opening of an energy corridor from the Caspian to the Mediterranean allows to bypass Russia. This project (‘Nabucco’) is mainly dependent from the gas of Baku. Russia and the United States also treat the Aliev clan carefully. NATO had planned to install part of its missile defense shield in Azerbaijan, but then changed its mind, when Russia opposed the idea.

France is not an exception. The conflict with Armenia which took over 30 thousand lives, continues to remain as a thorn in Aliev’s leg. With its energy revenues Azerbaijan played the card of military deterrence, wasteful spending funds for the purchase of modern equipment. Baku regularly threatens Yerevan to restart military operations if Armenia refuses to leave the occupied territories. It is not a surprise that Armenia boycotted the Eurovision. Today Azerbaijan’s defense budget equals to the state budget of Armenia.

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