In its draft resolution PACE’s Monitoring Committee has made a series of recommendations to the authorities of Azerbaijan as part of its ongoing monitoring of the country.
The recommendations included reinforcing democratic "checks and balances" in order to ensure free and fair elections, judicial independence, end of crackdown on human rights and freedom of expression.
"We decided to focus our visit on the fundamental question of the independence of the judiciary, which is one of the basic preconditions for the rule of law, as well as for the separation of powers and a functioning system of checks and balances. We also discussed issues related to elections, as Azerbaijan will be holding general elections in November 2015. We had been alarmed by reports from human rights defenders, domestic and international NGOs and international organisations about the alleged use of charges against activists and journalists – as well as their lawyers-who, in the eyes of many, qualify as political prisoners and prisoners of conscience. We therefore decided to look specifically into the s tate of implementation of paragraphs 18.2 and 18.4 of Resolution 1917 (2013)".
"We remain concerned about freedom of expression and freedom of the media in Azerbaijan, both in legislation and in practice, and call on the authorities to ensure compliance with Article 10 of the Convention" said the report.
The list of recommendations was produced following Pedro Agramunt (Spain, EPP/CD) and Tadeusz Iwinski (Poland, SOC) visit to Azerbaijan in early March, 2015.