February 17, 2011
If you have nothing nice to say….
by Valerie Merians
According to a report on the website Panorama, representatives of Azerbaijan were forced to leave the Minsk book fair when it was discovered that they had no books on display other than those that were considered anti-Armenian.
“Having no other books available except those anti-Armenian books, Azerbaijani representatives were forced to cease their participation in International book exhibition and fair of Minsk,” says Panorama’s report.
Minsk, the capital of Belarus, hosts its 18th international book exhibition and fair February 9-13. Many countries, including Armenia and Azerbaijan, have pavilions to display their books at the exhibition.
According to Panorama:
Azerbaijani side represented anti-Armenian literature there. They had books introducing their anti-Armenian propaganda and activities. Armenian representatives told the organizers that they had only Armenian cultural books, while Azerbaijani pavilion represented books of national discrimination, hostility, etc.
The organizers have twice urged the Azerbaijani representatives to change the literature, but later it turned out that our neighbors had no other alternative to represent, which caused the closing of their pavilion and ceasing their participation.
Valerie Merians is the co-founder and co-publisher of Melville House.