The Baku Declaration on Principles of Observance of the International Norms Regarding Mass Media

We, participants of the 1st General Meeting and Conference of the Central Asian and Southern Caucasian Freedom of Expression Network, hold in the city of Baku on March, 18-20, 2003, count inadmissible:

  • Implementing of all kinds of censorship on mass media;
  • Intervention of the state organs or different political groups in activity of mass media;
  • Acceptance of the laws, preventing mass media to carry out the activity freely from all extraneous influences;
  • Intimidation of journalists and workers of mass media by violent ways.

We express the following:

  • To all states of region to bring legislative base into accord with the international norms;
  • To abolish all kinds of state organs engaged in regulation of activity of mass media;
  • To create all necessary conditions for normal functioning of mass media;
  • To forbid to the state bodies to establish mass media;
  • To allow journalists to move in the territory of five countries of the Central Asia and three countries of Southern Caucasus without visa.

We call on OSCE, the Council of Europe and all other international organizations to give more attention to region of the Central Asia and Southern Caucasus in sphere of maintenance of rights and freedoms of journalists, and also by way of rendering assistance in becoming and development of independent mass media.

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