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OSCE Protests Jailing Of Azeri Journalist

The OSCE has asked President Aliyev to reconsider the jailing of a journalist for libel (file photo) (AFP) March 3, 2006 (RFE/RL) -- The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) has protested to Azerbaijan about its jailing of journalist Samir Adigozelli.

Adigozelli is the editor and founder of the newspaper "Boyuk Millet." He was sentenced last week to one year's imprisonment for libelling the rector of Baku University who was recently elected a member of parliament.

The OSCE’s special representative for the Media, Miklos Haraszti, said in Vienna today he had written to Azerbaijan's President, Ilham Aliyev, expressing his concern about the severity of the sentence.

He recalled that a year ago Aliyev proposed a moratorium on the use of criminal defamation against the media. That followed the murder of prominent journalist, Elmar Husseynov.

Haraszti said the president should now push for permanent reform of the libel law.

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