US-funded radio station says Azerbaijan office raided

WASHINGTON - Azerbaijani authorities have raided and closed the bureau of the US-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) in an apparent attempt to silence one of the country's last independent media outlets, the station said on Friday.
It said in a statement that investigators and armed police had ordered employees into a room of the station's Baku bureau while they ransacked a company safe and confiscated documents and official stamps.
The station said a court order had stated that the search was part of an investigation of the Azerbaijani Service of the station in connection with Azeri laws on foreign funding of non-governmental organizations (NGOs).
RFL/RL, which made its name broadcasting into Russia and its communist allies during the Cold War, is funded by the U.S. government.
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