Friday, May 15

A comprehensive list of restrictions introduced during the European Games 2015

President of Azerbaijan, Ilham Aliyev, is allowed to do many things. Apart from jailing, intimidating, and ruining people's lives, he is also very creative when it comes to complicating people's lives even further (not that it wasn't complicated already).  

As we all know, European Games (aka European Olympic Games, which later were quickly changed into European Games) are fast approaching. In just a little less than a month, international athletes are going to ascend into the capital of this "rich", "democratic", "tolerant" and glitzy capital.  

Guests will be shown (only what is allowed to show) and eat (only where it is allowed to eat) and probably even use the toilet (only where it is allowed to) because of a simple fear of showing the true conditions.  

And don't get disappointed  if you step out on the streets in the search for billboards and quotes with late and current president's wisdom - they have been deleted but don't worry, if you come again (with a strong emphasis on "if") you might see it again everywhere around you.  

But with no further a due, here is a list of restrictions introduced thanks to these games:
  • all large and small “happiness palaces” - which is another name for large venues where normally Azerbaijanis host wedding parties and other ceremonies – are banned from work (this might not affect families to be but certainly the people who work at these venues whose sole income depends on these institutions);
  • no large vehicles (and in some cases buses) – trucks – will be allowed to enter/exit the city of Baku (the same story applies – what about all those men employed in this job?);
  • all the small street vendors – which sold phone credit, sunflower seeds, and little things as such – would also be banned from working on the streets;
  • drivers earning their income by providing taxi services here and there will be banned from doing so unless they are driving a new car. All old cars wont be allowed to drive in downtown area;
  • no illegal parking (around the vicinity of the arena)
  • alcohol wont be sold (given the games coincide with the month of Ramadan and so the committee decided to ban sale of spirits all together); pedestrians will have designated roads for walking;
  • there wont be any construction work (in the vicinity of the arena); all street beggars will be taken out of the city (there has been no official decision on this but likely to happen);
  • oh, and i almost forgot, you cannot die during the games, because if you do, your family and relatives and friends wont be able to hold a burial ceremony as it too is banned.
And as I have written earlier, residents of the capital are requested not to hang clothes outside on their balconies and etc.  

But these are not the only limits. Those who read this blog, are aware of a much bigger and sever crackdown against rights groups, activists and journalists taking place in the country. And yet, the government officials continue to claim its all lies – that its all part of this large, international black PR campaign. Just like the first deputy chairman of the national assembly Ziyafet Asgarov who said, “it is very disappointing that a number of international organizations along with some local non-governmental organizations have joined in some black pr campaign in the wake of first European Games. I am disappointed to see that this campaign is trying to discredit Azerbaijan. Instead, they [the government of Azerbaijan] should be thanked for taking on this responsibility and be thanked”. 

Hmm... I am trying really hard to find at least one little thing to thank our government for but nothing comes to mind really!  


Ismayil Haciyev said...

why are you so worried about our problems right now?It may be hidden beneath other intention? !!!

Ramil Iskandarli said...

Limitation on traffic rules, movements during the huge events is a normal process in all countries. it seems your aim is just to make a populist blames on Azerbaijan. Please stop being a part of this dirty campaign and go and buy a ticket to European Games instead:-)

Samir said...

Guys that's what you're talking about?no illegal parking your country agree with illegal parking?
in your country you Park wherever you want?
drivers earning their income by providing taxi services here and there will be banned from doing so unless they are driving a new want to say that in the city there will be taxis? nonsense!taxi will be the only legitimate taxis,and other drivers who make money by driving they do not pay tax and are essentially engaged in illegal business

Rashid Mammadov said...

Azerbaijan is strong enough to hold global sports and cultural events! Stop making irrelevant comments regarding the European Games. It is common for all states that during such big events there can emerge these type of problems. But Azerbaijan overcomes all the problems as necessary.

Rubaba Mammadova said...

Please stop putting pressure on Azerbaijan in the run-up to the European Games! Don't be a part of dirty campaign against Azerbaijan before European Games. Azerbaijan successfully manages the organization of the European Games.

Ismayil Karimov said...

1. You list of prohibitions during European Games are baseless.There is wedding ban. Or parking ban. Is there any illegal parking places freely allowed in Europe. Of course, not. So funny to read these arguments.

Ismayil Karimov said...

3. Those who research corruption and ethics in the visit of American senators to Azerbijan, why don't they research paid senators for lobbying the Armenian genocide issue?

Nigar Iskandarova said...

Regulation of traffic is fine for avoiding big problems and providing safety. So, I see it becomes difficult to find some real problems in Azerbaijan :)

Elmar Aliyev said...

Spreading false information about Azerbaijan, members of the media. "If you want something to criticize, first Check the facts.

Elmar Aliyev said...

Spreading false information about Azerbaijan, members of the media. "If you want something to criticize, first Check the facts.

Anonymous said...

I am from England working in Azerbaijan and it's 3 weeks to the games. I haven't seen any of this crack down yet. I'm keen to see whether it is true. We had lots of stray cats and dogs here which we have sent to be adopted in America as we were concerned they might be 'irradiated' before the games like they were in sochi. My experience so far is that even in the suburbs of baku it is beautiful. Sure the streets aren't finished and there are market sellers on the streets, washing hanging outside but I think that is what makes it beautiful here. It reminds me of how simple the world used to be. I don't think such things need to be hidden. The Azeri's I have met are all lovely people and my experiences so far have been great!