March 27th 2013 in Briefings International Relations

 The Republic of Azerbaijan has come under criticism from a number of human rights and political organizations in the past week for allegedly suppressing anti-government demonstrates.  In one case, the arrest of four youth members of the pro-democracy movement NIDA were detained by Azerbaijani security forces after organizing a peaceful anti-government protest, and were subsequently handed lengthy prison sentences.  Additionally, on March 10, 2013 the Azerbaijani chapter of Human Rights House, an NGO with offices around the globe, was forced to cease operations for two years on the orders of the government.  The human rights commissioner for the Council of Europe recently censured Azerbaijan for failing to meet its commitments to freedom of expression and basic human rights. (March 18, 2013 – Reuters; March 19, 2013 – Human Rights House; March 20, 2013 – Amnesty International)