There was an incomprehensible feeling of strength and dignity, energy and calm understanding of her own power and importance as the U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton walked into the Treaty Room in the U.S. Department of State on Monday to meet our group of about 30 journalists and bloggers who came to learn about “social media” in the United States.Secretary Clinton is perhaps the most powerful politician I’ve seen from such a short distance. Madam Secretary came to us to say a couple of words about the importance of new technologies. Than she said she’d be happy to answer a couple of questions.
Secretary Clinton commented on a question asked by my collegue Ulviyya Asadzade from RFE/RL Azerbaijani service on the recent “2009 Annual Report on Human Rights” prepared by the U.S. State Department, which is highly critical of the situation with freedom of speech and human rights in Azerbaijan. Secretary Clinton dismissed charges, that the US Administration is overlooking human rights violations in Azerbaijan and continuing cooperation with Azerbaijani authorities in almost every aspect because of energy interests.
“We are aware of the issues both in Azerbaijan and Armenia,” Secretary Clinton said specifically mentioning two Azerbaijani bloggers who were jailed “over views expressed.”
However, the U.S. Secretary of State said, the current U.S. administration is doing its best to resolve the Karabakh conflict. “We think, that if the conflict is resolved a lot of the HR issues will be solved too,” she concluded.
She also answered a question on Uganda and, I think, Palestine, but my mind was racing – thinking of what I should do with the answer related to Karabakh I just got… Well – now I’ve posted it where appropriate…
Meanwhile, I’ll be heading to the U.S. Congress today, on to San Francisco to meet Google, Facebook and Twitter later this week. While at it – I’d suggest you to view the video below – these are U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s remarks on Internet freedom in a speech on January 21st.