Saturday, January 17

New addition to Heydarov's empire of businesses?!

Its never enough for the rich of Azerbaijan! Businesses, construction bids, companies with interests in everything, lobby companies (of course!) and much more. 
 
Whatever it is that would make the rich of Azerbaijan richer, famous, and make them look good, they'd go after it. 

Soccer too fits perfectly into this combination of money, fame and fortune of Azerbaijani officials. As many of you know, Azerbaijan took over the sponsorship of Atletico Madrid for a season and a half (January 2013). "Azerbaijan, the land of fire" was plastered over their uniforms and the club also visited Azerbaijan.  This caprice cost Azebraijani government just 12millionEUR. You know, pocket money for some in this government. The deal was surely renewed to run for another season in 2014- 2015 (the deal ends by June 2015 surely costing Azerbaijan more than 12millionEUR by this point).

Well there is one person in particular who thinks its time to go beyond just some sponsorship. Cuz' surely thats aint enough. Why not invest in a club?! And thats where Aston Villa comes in. Turns out none of the Sheikhs were interested. But someone similar to a Sheikh is interested. And that Sheikh is from Azerbaijn. His name is Kemaleddin Heydarov. One of the many businesses of Heydarov's empire is a company called Gilan Holding (in case you are interested to see some of the "few" companies listed under Gilan Holding check out this link). Heydarov himself, is the head of the Ministry of Emergencies in Azerbaijan. 

So anyway, this article explores the rumors behind Azerbaijan's Gilan Holding going after Aston Villa team. Christmas is over, but looks likes Heydarov's generous heart and wallet are in for some present.

Monday, January 12

Cabinet of Ministers meeting as usual: Aliyev speaking of his satellites, "reforms" and "progress"

In a meeting of Cabinet of Ministers President Aliyev spoke of 2014 and the prospects for 2015. Aliyev claimed "Azerbaijan kept the pace of intensive development while the country's people lived in safety in 2014". 

It would have been great if President could define what he means by "safety" because if fear, intimidation and imprisonment is "safety" then something is wrong with wording here. Or maybe he meant to say, I keep my prominent critics in jail to ensure their safety from all the bad demons?! Surely this is what he really meant to say. 


President also no doubt mentioned a "strong unity between the people and government in Azerbaijan". Ehm... unity between us and you sir?! Hmm... I think we found ourselves another word that needs some definition here. Because the way I see it there ain't unity between us but just you eating away our future with your kind and us fearing of what is yet to come from you. No doubt there is unity but it aint between you and the people. Its between you and your minions. Otherwise we all know your "love" and "kindness" for political opposition in Azerbaijan sir. No doubt about that! 

Aliyev mentioned the economy too - how could he not?! After all if its not for massive economy projects how would his family and his cronies appropriate more $$$?! Surely it was a success! Lots of investment projects! Lots of pocketed bills for you!  

The country enjoys "great respect in the world" Aliyev noted. Although this too raises questions - which countries respect Azerbaijan? Surely the ones who have no clue of Aliyev's authoritarian grip or those who share similar interests?! As for dictatorships liking and thinking fondly of other dictatorships - well thats no news Sir! And of course we shall forget those countries who would gladly and happily respect Azerbaijan with the help of some extra cash, a nice vacation and some fancy presents.  

Oh of course, I almost forgot the launch of our second satellite! How about launching some real reforms in corruption sir? Like real ones?! Not fake promises and statements you so much love and enjoy giving. Here is a suggestion: how about we place that corruption into a third satellite and launch it into the orbit along with all those in the government of Azerbaijan who have stolen from the people and keep on stealing? Can we do that Mr. President? Oh wait, that would probably also mean launching yourself and your family along too. Hmm... Not sure there will be the comforts of life you are used to but hey its worth a try no?! 

Anyway. As we leave behind one of the most difficult years behind, my wish for 2015 is for our President and his minions to get a bit of sense, honesty and humanness (that's because I realize my satellite wish would be a bit problematic). Of course thats never going to happen, I realize that. So perhaps 2015 wont be any better. After all we have these weird games that were invented as per Aliyev's wish called European Olympics which have already costed billions and then another set of violated elections await us in November. So on the day when we remember the campaign condemning the deaths of conscripts (who are dying in your multi billion super duper army by the way) I wish us all strength and patience. We are going to need a lot of it. Because after all we all are here to stay unless of course that satellite comes along.