Baku hosts conference highlighting National Leader Heydar Aliyev’s media policy (PHOTO)

A conference on “Media policy of National Leader Heydar Aliyev and modern Azerbaijani media" was held in Baku on Monday.

The conference was co-organized by the Media Development Agency of the Republic of Azerbaijan (MEDIA) and the Audiovisual Council to mark the 100th anniversary of National Leader Heydar Aliyev, News.Az reports.

The event opened after the national anthem of Azerbaijan was sounded. Later on, the conference participants observed a minute of silence to honor the memory of National Leader Heydar Aliyev and the Patriotic War martyrs.

Delivering a keynote speech at the event, Ahmad Ismayilov, Executive Director of the Media Development Agency, noted that National Leader Heydar Aliyev had always highly appreciated the work of the media and journalists, had a deep respect for the journalist profession and maintained close contact with media workers.

He emphasized that President Ilham Aliyev, who successfully continues the policies and traditions of the national leader by taking into account the requirements of the modern era, defined the creation of favorable conditions for the development of the media as one of the priority directions of the state policy, and this great trust has increased the responsibility of media representatives in carrying out their professional missions.

Ismat Sattarov, Chairman of the Audiovisual Council, in his speech, highlighted the attention National Leader Heydar Aliyev had paid to the freedom of speech and information, which are important principles of democracy, as well as to the development of the media in the country. He noted that after the abolition of censorship by the relevant decree signed by the national leader in 1998, a number of legislative acts were adopted, the Council, acting as an independent regulatory body in line with European standards, was established, and the sphere of regulation of television and radio broadcasting entered a completely new stage. Sattarov emphasized that the development of information and communication technologies and the creation of favorable conditions in the audiovisual media market allowed the creation of new television and radio broadcasters and made this field enter a new form.

Tahir Budagov, Deputy Chairman of the ruling New Azerbaijan Party, said that after National Leader Heydar Aliyev came to power in 1993 based on national confidence and with the will of the Azerbaijani people, reforms were carried out in the field of media as in all directions, and fundamental and positive changes took place in the field of media. Budagov emphasized that along with the unforgettable heroism of Azerbaijani soldiers and officers under the leadership of Supreme Commander-in-Chief, President Ilham Aliyev, patriotic and professional journalists resolutely protected the interests of Azerbaijan. He added that during the Patriotic War, Azerbaijani journalists exposed Armenian lies by delivering the realities to the world community.

Thereafter, the conference featured the screening of a video entitled “National Leader Heydar Aliyev and Azerbaijani Media”.

Rafig Hashimov, Deputy Chairman of Azerbaijan Television, who moderated a panel session on the topic “Media policy of National Leader Heydar Aliyev and modern Azerbaijani media”, noted that thanks to the political will and huge efforts of the national leader, artificial obstacles to pluralism, freedom of speech and information in Azerbaijan have been lifted.

Speaking at the panel session, Hikmat Babaoghlu, a member of the Milli Majlis, touched upon the issue of media freedom and mass political consciousness in Heydar Aliyev’s policy. Talking about the constitutional foundations of media freedom in Azerbaijan, he assessed the media as a universal tool that shapes public opinion.

Rashad Majid, Chairman of the Azerbaijan Press Council, stressed that one of the greatest historical merits of National Leader Heydar Aliyev in the development of national journalism was the complete abolition of media censorship in 1998. Highly valuing the national leader’s important role in the formation of attitude towards journalists in the society, he noted that all journalists in the country recognized Heydar Aliyev not only as the head of state but also as a friend and a close confidant who appreciated their work.

Telli Panahgizi, a member of the Audiovisual Council, pointed out that the steps taken by Heydar Aliyev as an outstanding leader and citizen played an important role in the strengthening of independent Azerbaijan, as well as in the development of educated and professional young people, including professional journalists.

Aflatun Amashov, Editor-in-Chief of Xalq newspaper, emphasized that the conditions created by the national leader for the free activity of media outlets and the measures taken to improve the legislative framework paved the way for the expansion of pluralism of opinion in the country and the achievement of substantial progress in the field of protection of freedom of speech and opinion.


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