MEPs Send Letter of Support for Khadija Ismayilova

Published: 15 March 2012


Three members of the European Parliament sent a letter to EU External Action Chief Catherine Ashton urging her to call for an investigation into the harassment of OCCRP Regional coordinator and Radio Free Europe journalist Khadija Ismayilova.

 The letter was sent by German MEPs Elmar Brok and Barbara Lochbihler and Portuguese MEP Ana Gomes on March 8, International Women’s Day.

All three raised alarm that Ismaylova received six pictures of an intimate nature accompanied by a threat, and alarm general at the state of media freedom in Azerbaijan.

The MEPs urged Ashton to raise the issue in her next meetings with representatives of Azerbaijan and the Eastern Partners program.  They also called for Azbaijan president Ilham Aliyev to be personally “taken to task” to ensure Ismayilova’s safety.

The Institute for Reporter Freedom and Safety, based in Azerbaijan’s capital Baku, also released a statement yesterday condemning the smear campaign against Ismaylova.  You can read it here.