Azerbaijan election lacked genuine competition, int'l observers say

Ilham Aliyev

The national elections commission said that with 65 percent of the ballots counted, President Ilham Aliyev had received 86 percent of the vote in an early presidential election. But on 5 February, a directive from Ilham Aliyev ordered the country hold snap elections on 11 April.

Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev casts his vote during the presidential election in Baku, Azerbaijan, April 11, 2018.

M - President of Kyrgyzstan Sooronbai Jeenbekov congratulated President of Azerbaijan Ilham Aliyev on re-election to the 4th term.

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The deputy prime minister also noted that Azerbaijan will develop more rapidly in the next seven years, the role of Azerbaijan in energy security of the world will increase and the economic development will accelerate.

"Against this background and in the absence of pluralism, including in the media, this election lacked genuine competition". Azerbaijan's main opposition parties did not participate in the polls and had called for a boycott, claiming that the vote would be rigged. Other candidates refrained from directly challenging or criticizing the incumbent, and distinction was not made between his campaign and his official activities, the global observers concluded in a preliminary statement today. 894 worldwide and about 59,000 local observers observed the elections.

Mr Aliyev has led the country since 2003, when he succeeded his father. This new election victory offers the president a further seven years in office.

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