“Google and Facebook have become more favorable for terrorism and separatism” – Ahmad Shahidov spoke about the internet freedom at the OSCE Vienna Meeting

Today the International Conference, organized by The Austrian Chairmanship of the OSCE and the Czech Chairmanship of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers continued its work in Vienna, Austria. Representatives of OSCE participating States, OSCE institutions, and OSCE executive structures, representatives of inter-governmental organizations, legal professionals, representatives of civil society and researchers from 57 participating States took part in discussions.

Taking an active part in discussion on the topic of “Determining the unlawful nature of third-party content – what does it mean in practice?”, Head of Azerbaijan Institute for Democracy and Human Rights Dr. Ahmad Shahidov spoke about the Internet Freedom in Azerbaijan and touched upon interesting moments. The Human Rights Defender said that there are 98 percent internet coverage in Azerbaijan and Nagorno-Karabakh and surrounding areas are an exception because of occupation by Armenia.

Speaking about the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict facing Azerbaijan, Head of AIDHR Dr. Ahmad Shahidov said that Google, Facebook and other mega-companies have become favorable for terrorism and separatism: “I want to focus on two issues. Unfortunately, today radicalism and terrorism are gaining strength from the internet. A number of terrorist organizations gather new partners on the Internet and social networks. Here are representatives of Google and Facebook. I would like to apply to them. Because they are also responsible for the spread of this negative trend. I think Google and Facebook should be more careful about such global threats.
Another issue is the problem of neutrality policy of social networks. I want to mention one issue. Maybe it looks too small. But in fact, it is thought-provoking. Google has been actively involved in many conflicts. For example, when searching the Internet about the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict, Google’s search engine officially presents maps showing Nagorno-Karabakh as an independent country. This is against the territorial integrity of Azerbaijan. There are borders adopted by the United Nations, and everyone should respect it.
In addition, Google has a Translate service – Google Translate. This translation program contains some serious errors. When translating texts related to Nagorno-Karabakh in this program, serious mistakes are made and words and expressions about the occupation by Armenia are not translated. This is not casual. In the same way if we translate the statements about Russia and Ukraine, the Russian Federation is shown as an occupier. I can not understand. Is this coincidence or open double standards? I ask the Google representative to comment on this issue as well.”

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