Azerbaijani Opposition Have no Chances to Win in First Round of Presidential Elections: Leader of Azerbaijani Opposition

Azerbaijan, Baku, 15 January/corr. Trend S. Ilhamgizi/ None of the candidates from the Azerbaijani opposition have a chance to win the first round of presidential elections, the chairman of the Democratic Party of Azerbaijan (DPA) Sardar Jalaloglu said.

"The reality is that it is impossible for a number of the candidates from the opposition to win a place from the Government in the first round of the elections. Only during the second round of the elections can a candidate from the united opposition have the chance to win," the chairman of DPA said to Trend.

The regular presidential elections will be held in Azerbaijan in October. Parties from the opposition, Musavat, Umid, Great Establishment have announced that they will take part in the presidential elections with their own candidate. The ruling party Yeni Azerbaijan also announced that the current president Ilham Aliyev will be nominated for the elections.

According to Jalaloglu, the unity of opposition candidates and their individual victory in the first stage does not seem realistic. "The Government has the recourses and opportunities for a large campaign which the opposition does not posses. The opposition is splitting due to self-contradiction and differences," Jalaloglu said.

He added that compared to the opposition parties, Yeni Azerbaijan have more members and more material opportunities in addition to Government resources which increase their chances.

If the second round of elections are held, all the candidates who rival a candidate from the ruling party must unite, Jalaloglu said.

"To this effect the candidates from the opposition must now make obligations that if the second round of elections are held all of them will support a candidate who has more chance. Otherwise, by not uniting at the decisive moment the opposition will make its biggest mistake," said the chairman of the DPA.

The Musavat party which will take part in the elections with its own candidate does not agree with the DPA position and says that if the elections will be fair, the opposition can win in the first round of the elections. By making such statements the DPA chairman seeks reasons to substantiate his participation in the elections, Arif Hajili, the head of the Central Executive Body of the party said to Trend.

"The election experience of Azerbaijan shows that there is no second round in the presidential elections, all is decided in the first round. If the elections are fair, the opposition will win, but if there is falsification, the government will not allow the holding of the second round," Hajili said.

According to Hajili, though there are great number of candidates from the opposition, Musavat can win in the first round of the elections due not to votes of political parties, but due to the masses in the country who are dissatisfied with the Government.

The ruling party Yeni Azerbaijan does not see a strong rival in the elections and says that Ilham Aliyev will win in the first round of the elections and there is no need for a second round.

The right DPA was founded in 1991 by Sardar Jalaloglu. Up to January of last year the party stuck to a radical position against the Government. Later a new political course was developed on the establishment of talks with the Government.

The opposition party Musavat was founded in 1992. Isa Gembar, the present Chairman of the Party was the Speaker of the Azerbaijani Parliament (Milli Majlis) from 1992-1993 and a candidate in the 2003 Presidential elections. Five MPs represent the party in the Parliament of the country.

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