Azerbaijani activists speak out against VIGINUM's targeting

    POLITICS  27 May 2024 - 19:40

    A group of individuals issued a statement in order raise awareness among international organizations regarding France’s unjust actions against Azerbaijani social media activists, APA reports.

    The statement says that, despite its self-proclaimed role as a champion of freedom of speech and expression, France hypocritically suppresses opposing viewpoints concerning its actions: “We call on global institutions to take action against these violations of fundamental freedoms.

    Our opposition to France’s neo-colonial policies in the 21st century is grounded in the continued exploitation and subjugation of various nations. France’s ongoing actions, which include economic exploitation and political interference, reflect a continuation of its colonial mindset. Our opposition is based on the following reasons:

    1. France’s economic policies that exploit resources in other nations.

    2. Political interference that undermines the sovereignty of these nations.

    3. Support for separatist movements that destabilize regions.

    After expressing our concerns on social media, we became targets of a coordinated harassment campaign led by the French Cybersecurity Agency (VIGINUM). This campaign severely impacted our personal safety, professional reputation, and freedom of expression.

    Following VIGINUM’s biased accusations, we faced coordinated attacks and threats on social media. Our private information, provided during social media account registrations, was deliberately publicized, endangering our personal security. Actions by French state institutions have tarnished our professional images and inflicted significant moral harm, degrading our dignity.

    This incident is not isolated. France frequently contradicts the values it purports to uphold globally. While the South Caucasus region is not a colony of France, this does not prevent France from interfering in the region’s internal affairs, causing distress and instability.

    Particularly during the delicate post-conflict period between Armenia and Azerbaijan, France plays a counterproductive role. As the two nations make concrete steps towards signing a peace agreement, France, which once co-chaired the Minsk Group tasked with resolving the conflict, instead choses to support revanchist and separatist elements within Armenia. By doing so, France undermines the peace process and exacerbates regional tensions.

    Additionally, France provides refuge to individuals who have committed crimes against Azerbaijanis and Turks. This support for separatist movements and terrorists directly contradicts France’s stated commitment to peace and justice.

    We call on international organizations to hold France accountable for its actions. It is imperative to condemn and take legal action against the suppression of voices that highlight France’s wrongdoings. The global community must stand against any nation that undermines core values such as freedom of speech and expression and the principle of non-interference in other countries’ affairs. These values are integral to the civilized world and essential for maintaining global peace and justice.

    By taking a firm stance against France's actions, international organizations can reaffirm their commitment to high values and demonstrate that no country will be allowed to obstruct the fight against injustice.”

    The statement was signed by Islam Bafadarov, Sarvaz Abbasov, Anar Gaziyev, Fatima Shikhiyeva, Elmaddin Behbud, Ayshan Aslan Mammadli, Samira Talibova, Tajaddin Gozalov, Aygun Jalilzada, Farida Eyyubova.

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