‘I Accuse’ – Azerbaijan corruption exposed


Allegations of Azerbaijani attempts to buy support from members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) gained significant traction last month with the publication of a report commissioned by the assembly, Transitions Online reports:

In the context of “corruptive activities in favor of Azerbaijan,” the report “established that there was a strong suspicion that certain current and former members of PACE had engaged in activity of a corruptive nature.” Some PACE members “have been accused of accepting money, jewelry, prostitutes and paid hotel stays in oil-rich Azerbaijan,” the New York Times reports.

Western politicians’ complicity with the Baku regime’s corruption was highlighted in detail by Emin Milli (above), director of Meydan TV in a must-view “I Accuse” statement reminiscent of Emile Zola.

In September 2017, the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and its partners revealed a multi-billion dollar money laundering and corruption scheme called the Azerbaijani Laundromat (see below) and detailed how the Azerbaijani government used a slush fund to bribe European politicians, including CoE parliamentary assembly members, in addition to laundering money through major European financial institutions and U.K.-based shell companies.

Head of state Ilham Aliyev and his wife Mehriban Aliyeva, have been described as the “embodiment of nepotism and kleptocracy” in Azerbaijan.

The Laundromat provides a tantalizing glimpse into the way this kleptocracy works, wrote Khadija Ismayilova (left), who has been jailed for her reporting on high-level corruption.

Milli testified before the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (CSCE) briefing on “Democracy Deferred: The State of Elections and Fundamental Freedoms in Azerbaijan,” alongside Audrey Altstadt, professor of history at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst; and Maran Turner, executive director of Freedom Now.

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