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Azerbaijan: RFE/RL Broadcasts Resume After Government Shutdown

Prague, 5 May 1998 (RFE/RL) -- RFE/RL's Azerbaijani-language, mediumwave service has been restored in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan's Minister of Communications, Nadir Ahmedov, confirmed in a telephone call to RFE/RL's Prague headquarters that the authorities decided to restore mediumwave service yesterday.

Azerbaijani authorities had shut down the broadcasts two weeks ago, saying the U.S.-funded radio service lacked proper documents.

Supporters of the radio service and opposition leaders had organized and participated in rallies in Baku, Istanbul and New York City to demand that the service be restored, and to protest Azerbaijan's government policies.

The U.S. Embassy in Baku has intervened in the situation, and the State Department had expressed grave concern about the shutdown, urging Azerbaijan to restore the broadcasts.