Khadija Ismayilova

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Statements   |   Azerbaijan

CPJ calls on Azerbaijan to free jailed journalist Khadija Ismayilova

New York, July 23, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Azerbaijani authorities to immediately release Khadija Ismayilova, an investigative journalist who has been imprisoned since December on charges of embezzlement, tax evasion, and abuse of power, among others. Ismayilova's trial is scheduled to be held on Friday in Baku, according to news reports. If convicted, she faces up to 19 years in prison. CPJ and other international press freedom groups believe the charges against Ismayilova are in retaliation for her coverage of corruption in the Azerbaijani government.

July 23, 2015 1:09 PM ET

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Blog   |   Azerbaijan

Baku 2015: Press freedom, Azerbaijan, and the European Games

Azerbaijani singer Faig Agayev, left, and wrestler Farid Mansurov take part in the Baku Games torch relay on June 9. Azerbaijan has cracked down on the press in the lead up to the first European Games. (AFP/Tofik Babayev)

Tomorrow 50 countries are due to take part in the opening ceremony of the inaugural European Games in Baku, but Azerbaijan's most prominent journalist, Khadija Ismayilova, will not be at the celebrations. The award-winning investigative reporter has been in jail since December on retaliatory charges over her writing on corruption.

Letters   |   Azerbaijan, Ireland

CPJ calls on European Olympic Committees to engage with Azerbaijan on press freedom

Dear President Patrick Hickey: I am writing on behalf of the Committee to Protect Journalists, an independent international press freedom organization, to call your attention to the dismal climate for press freedom in Azerbaijan, which is scheduled to host the first-ever European Games on June 12.

Blog   |   Azerbaijan

International coalition calls on European Court to prioritize Azerbaijani press cases

Azerbaijan, one of the 10 Most Censored Countries in the world, according to new research by the Committee to Protect Journalists, is to host the first-ever European Games this June. As Baku prepares to bask in the spotlight by hosting an international mega-event yet again, eight of the country's independent journalists, including award-winning investigative reporter Khadija Ismayilova, languish in jail in retaliation for their work. Azerbaijan's most prominent media freedom defender, Emin Huseynov, has taken refuge at the Swiss embassy to avoid politically motivated prosecution and imprisonment; dozens of human rights defenders and civil activists have been jailed or forced into exile; and the work of multiple independent nongovernmental organizations and media outlets has been paralyzed or shuttered by authorities that have zero tolerance for criticism or dissent.

Statements   |   Azerbaijan

Khadija Ismayilova slammed with new charges in Azerbaijan

New York, February 13, 2015--The Azerbaijani Prosecutor General's Office today charged Khadija Ismayilova, an award-winning investigative journalist, with embezzlement, illegal business, tax evasion, and abuse of power, regional and international press reported. The new charges came the same week that news reports said a leading press freedom advocate, Emin Huseynov, has been in hiding in the Swiss embassy in Baku to avoid arrest on similar accusations.

February 13, 2015 1:05 PM ET

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Alerts   |   Azerbaijan

In Azerbaijan, journalist in hiding faces criminal investigation

New York, February 12, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Azerbaijani authorities to drop the criminal investigation of Emin Huseynov, journalist and media freedom advocate, and allow him to work and travel without harassment and fear of arrest.

Statements   |   Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan must immediately release Khadija Ismayilova

New York, February 6, 2015--The Baku Appeals Court today upheld a lower court's decision to extend the pretrial detention of investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova to March 24, according to regional press reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists calls for Ismayilova's immediate release.

Alerts   |   Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan continues press crackdown with jail term and arrest extension

New York, January 29, 2015--The Committee to Protect Journalists calls on Azerbaijani authorities to end their crackdown on the press after a five-year sentence was handed to reporter Seymur Hazi, according to news reports. The pre-trial detention of investigative reporter Khadija Ismayilova was also extended this week, news reports said.

Alerts   |   Azerbaijan

Investigative reporter Khadija Ismayilova jailed in Azerbaijan

Khadija Ismayilova, who has been jailed for two months pending trial, speaks here at the 2012 Courage in Journalism Awards hosted by the International Women's Media Foundation. (AP/Invision/Todd Williamson)

New York, December 5, 2014--An Azerbaijani court in Baku today ordered the imprisonment of award-winning investigative journalist Khadija Ismayilova for two months pending trial after a local man accused her of urging him to commit suicide, according to news reports. The Committee to Protect Journalists condemns the ruling and calls on authorities in Azerbaijan to stop their prosecution of Ismayilova, who also faces charges of libel in a separate case.

"We call on Azerbaijani authorities to stop gagging reporters through trumped-up charges and arrests, and immediately release Khadija Ismayilova," said Muzaffar Suleymanov, CPJ's Europe and Central Asia research associate. "The politicized nature of the arrest is obvious--an award-winning reporter is being harassed for her work in Azerbaijan."

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