Azerbaijan’s grand experiment of scaring everyone with its blacklist and making the Russian-Israeli blogger Alexander Lapshin an example has failed spectacularly. All kudo’s go to Lapshin, of course. What a guy! But let’s start from the beginning, shall we?
I came across this infographic on Настоящее Время, which shows average salaries in post-Soviet states in 2016-17. The data is taken from open sources, like the World Bank, etc. Interesting to see that the salaries in oil-rich Azerbaijan are lower than in Armenia, meanwhile Georgia is ahead of everyone. Below is a table extracted from the infographic, which I’ve typed up and translated into English for easy reference.
Even though Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia are vastly different states, they are always viewed together as one region — the South Caucasus. This means that all international human rights, anti-corruption and democratization reports will look at the indicators from these three countries and try to ‘bring them in line’ together. Continue reading
This is a sad day. Nagorno-Karabakh President Bako Sahakian personally and deliberately defeated one of the greatest arguments in support of Karabakh’s independence from dictatorial Azerbaijan by swearing in for yet another term on Thursday and extending his decade-long rule.
I came across this interesting info-graphic by RFE/RL on social views and morality in the Eastern European countries. What I found most startling, however, was just how unanimous are the views in Armenia: 96% disapprove drug use and prostitution, 98% disapprove homosexuality, 79% disapprove premarital sex. This is perhaps the result of having such a homogeneous society, 98.1% of the population are ethnic Armenians according to the latest population census.
Understandably, this creates a situation, where dissent is not tolerated. I remember the struggles I had in the 90’s, when I had long hair and a beard in highly conservative Gyumri. Luckily, this has changed a great deal now and men having long hair and beards are not fawned upon so badly anymore. Still, this info-graphic is truly disturbing to me, because it reveals lack of diversity and tolerance in the society.