Asked “can Azerbaijani news media today carry out an information war with Armenian news outlets?” Mehman Aliyev , director of Turan, an independent Azerbaijani news agency, in an interview with SalamNews agency, said:
“Frankly, I don’t like the word ‘war’. Sounds a bit too much. We’re not conducting a war. There are separate initiatives that are completely partisan. [Chief of the Political Analyses and Information Department of Azerbaijan’s Presidential Administration] Elnur Aslanov said we’ve won the information war with Armenia. I don’t know what or where they won.
“I can say that from the standpoint of promoting, campaigning, Armenians are very experienced; they work in a more organized and active way. Their presence in Russian media is large. Take, for example, Regnum news agency. This is the result of thoughtful and long-term policies. Our work, however, is more fragmented. A little work [success] is presented as a huge victory. It’s like a soap bubble. In fact, we win nothing, and we won’t win with such a policy. Failure continues. As for our agency, we are not fighting a war — we’re just doing a job.
“I would like to note one more thing: our agency has 20 years of exchanging information with an Armenian partner [ArmInfo news agency]. This is a very rare phenomenon in global practice. Even during the war we exchanged information. And there are positive aspects to this exchange of information. We have to convey our thoughts not through insults or threats, but through facts — the facts have to speak correctly, to convince. In order for them to drop their weapons, we must engage in dialogue; to speak and achieve something this way. I think, in this sense, there’s success. Because I know that among Armenian news outlets Turan has quite a strong position — they link to us often. This is very important, because we can get our word across to them.”