Libraries full of hate: from Azerbaijan to Georgia

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Azerbaijan has been supplying Georgian libraries with books containing hate speech against Armenians. While the libraries don’t see them as a problem, some Azerbaijani Georgians fear they might help plant the seeds of ethnic tension.


When Imran Gafarov, an Azerbaijani Georgian, came across a book full of territorial claims and hate speech against Armenians at the public library in Marneuli, an Azerbaijani-majority city in southern Georgia’s Kvemo Kartli region, he was in a state of disbelief.

‘When I visited the Marneuli library, I saw a book called Western Azerbaijan’s Monuments, written by Aziz Alakbarli. I thought the book would be about the historical monuments located in the west of Azerbaijan. However, as I read the book, it became clear that the book was about monuments situated in the territory of Armenia. The book contained an element of hostility towards Armenians’, Gafarov told OC Media.

There are two copies of the book in the library. On the 13th page of the 2006 edition, there are territorial claims made against Armenia. On the 21st page, the writer claims that Armenians committed genocide against Azerbaijanis on four occasions. The 2007 edition contains a map of ‘Western Azerbaijan’ in which locations situated in Armenia are written in their Azerbaijani variants.

The library contains other propagandistic material, which can be divided into three types: hate speech directed at Armenia and Armenians, support for separatist and territorial claims against Iran, and propaganda on behalf of the ruling Aliyev family.


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