European parliament calls for investigation into ‘Azerbaijani Laundromat’

MEPs say Baku tried to ‘influence European decision-makers through illicit means’, as Council of Europe calls for legal action over defiance over ECHR

The European parliament has called for an investigation into revelations by the Guardian and media partners that Azerbaijan ran a secret $2.9bn (£2.2bn) slush fund to pay influential Europeans to paint a positive image of the authoritarian regime.

MEPs have demanded a “comprehensive” investigation into “attempts by Azerbaijan and other autocratic regimes … to influence European decision-makers through illicit means”, following a last-minute amendment to a report on corruption.

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