Saturday, April 16

Azerbaijan's "honest" Ombudsman

Wikipedia defines Ombudsman as:
a person who acts as a TRUSTED intermediary between an organization and some internal or external constituency while REPRESENTING the interests of the PUBLIC by INVESTIGATION and ADDRESSING complaints reported by individual CITIZENS
In Azerbaijan however, Obmudsman represents one body and acts within its interests only- the government. Elmira Suleymanova, who was elected in 2002 for a seven year term was the first Ombudsman to be appointed in Azerbaijan. So far, its been hard to gauge these woman's statements. Having met her personally was too rather a phenomenal experience as she failed to respond to any of our questions and since it was a meeting we were anxiously waiting for, that was disappointing indeed. But thats another story.

On April 16th [AZ], during the OSCE meeting in Vienna, Elmira Suleymanova dismissed the statements with regard to the pressing situation of human rights in Azerbaijan, not to mention belittled the presenter himself- Intiqam Aliyev (lawyer) and his organization as having no say and "0" influence in the country. She further accused him of being lenient towards the opposition and in fact being under pressure from these institutions (an argument which is very popular these days). The country's Ombudsman further accused Mr. Aliyev of having one purpose only- while talking of Azerbaijan in such a negative way, to get invited to events taking place abroad.

I am having a hard time understanding, that how, an official representative, an Ombudsman, could say something like this, during an International Conference, hosted by an organization like the OSCE, and actually believing in what she was saying and still consider herself as someone who is REPRESENTING people's rights and acts as a bridge between the people and the government. What a boost to the country's image...

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