The internet is not free in Azerbaijan: A letter to president Ilham Aliyev

Today Baku will host the Internet Governance Forum. Today the president ignores the truth about the lack of freedom in Azerbaijan.Dear Mr. President,As a citizen and former prisoner of conscience, I am glad that Azerbaijan is hosting the Internet Governance Forum. Since freedom of speech is a central issue at such a forum, I’d like to take this opportunity to address you.You once suggested in a speech that the internet is free in Azerbaijan. I am sure you will repeat this message at this global forum. It is true that people in Azerbaijan are free to use the internet, but it is also a fact that they can be severely punished afterwards for doing so. We have reports indicating that the government monitors all our internet communication carried through Azerbaijani providers without acquiring a warrant or notifying the individual or provider. Today many of our fellow citizens do not dare to speak out against your policies, online or offline. You have successfully managed to silence them.

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