A number of media representatives as well as different individuals have spread provocative information via the Internet with regard to Russian citizen Yunis Safarov carrying out a terrorist assault on Head of the Ganja City Executive Authority Elmar Valiyev and police officer Gasim Ashbazov on July 3, 2018, the Azerbaijani Prosecutor General’s Office told APA.
In order to mislead public opinion, disrupt socio-political stability, support terrorism, undermine the people’s confidence in the actions the government is taking, and downplay the work carried out by law enforcement agencies in the fight against crime, these individuals have disseminated false as well as illegal information, calling for support for terrorism, a change of government and constitutional changes in the Republic of Azerbaijan, the Prosecutor General’s Office said.
Criminal cases have been launched under Article 214-2 (opens calls to terrorism) against some profiles on social networks that have expressed an explicit call to terrorism in their posts and comments. Furthermore, a criminal case has been initiated under Article 281.1 (explicit calls against state) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan against explicit calls for people to hold illegal protests in order to seize power and change the Constitution of Azerbaijan. These criminal cases have been submitted to the State Security Service for preliminary investigation and the efforts are underway to arrest those responsible.
Moreover, from 3 to 6 July, officials, who are responsible for posting information on criminalaz.com and bastainfo.com websites, are accused of deliberately violating Article 10 of the Law of the Azerbaijani Republic “On Mass Media” and disseminating false and prohibited information aimed at misleading public opinion, disrupting socio-political stability and undermining the people’s confidence in the actions the government is taking. Earlier, those persons were warned twice by the Prosecutor General’s Office for violating Article 10 of the Law of the Azerbaijani Republic “On Mass Media”. A criminal case has been filed under Article 313 (service forgery that is bringing by official to official documents of obviously false data) of the Criminal Code of Azerbaijan against those persons. The Baku City Prosecutor’s Office has been instructed to conduct a preliminary investigation of the criminal cases.
The investigation conducted by the Prosecutor General’s Office also revealed that officials of topxeber.az and fia.az websites grossly breached Article 10 of the Law of the Azerbaijani Republic “On Mass Media” by disseminating sensational information that is not based on concrete facts. For this reason, heads of these websites were summoned to the Prosecutor’s Office and urged to stop disseminating disinformation on their internet websites. Prosecuting authorities have warned the heads of the abovementioned websites that the necessary legal measures will be taken in relation to them is they continue taking illegal actions.
The Prosecutor General’s Office added that it has already appealed to the Ministry of Transport, Communication and High Technologies to impose restrictions on access to bastainfo.com, criminalaz.com, topxeber.az and fia.az websites.