Social media users are meanwhile criticising the country’s foreign minister for "speaking incomprehensibly”" />

Azerbaijani journalists will be taught ‘to speak and write correctly’

Social media users are meanwhile criticising the country’s foreign minister for "speaking incomprehensibly”

Museum of Azerbaijani Literature, named after Nizami Ganjavi. Photo: JAMnews

President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev has signed a decree designed to “protect the purity of the Azerbaijani language and perfect its use”.

This mainly concerns the media.

The decree states that “although the modern Azerbaijani language has a perfect grammatical structure, a rich vocabulary and means of expression, it is often used incorrectly.”

Lexical and grammatical norms are not adhered to in the press and in advertising, the decree continues, noting that everyday vocabulary is used and foreign words are inappropriately inserted, all because there is no system of legal regulation and control over the language.

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The president has asked his cabinet to:

  • create a monitoring centre that will oversee the use of the state language and ensure the protection of its standards in the press and in advertising;
  • prepare and approve an action plan within one month’s time to protect the purity of the Azerbaijani language and perfect the use of the state language, in conjunction with the National Academy of Sciences;
  • prepare proposals to changes in the legislation in order to prevent cases where the norms of the literary language in the press and advertising are violated.


Foreign minister on “language trial”

Mistakes made by journalists and advertisers are often laughed at on Azerbaijani social media. Recently, Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov came under the spotlight. Social media users found that he spoke in broken Azerbaijani at an official meeting in Istanbul.

In the comments posted under a video recording of the minister’s speech, it was not irony that prevailed, but insults and even obscenities. The most decent comments about Mammadyarv was:

“In general, nothing he says is clear – not a single phrase.”

“He has no moral right to be foreign minister.”

“What a disgrace! Let him take a translator along so as to translate into normal Azerbaijani.”

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