Azerbaijani Opposition Will Appeal to Constitutional Court
Azerbaijan, Baku, 2 June / Trend corr. E.Babayev / The Azerbaijani opposition parties, which made a decision to participate in the forthcoming presidential elections, consider that the draft of amendments and supplements into the Election Code would create non-democratic conditions in the country. "The amendments and supplements into the Code contrary to democratic principals. I will make a court appeal to the Constitutional Court soon with regard to the draft," Eldar Namazov, Leader of the Public Forum "For Azerbaijan", told Trend on 2 June.
The draft of amendments and supplements into the Election Code of Azerbaijan were passed by the Parliament on 2 June. Under the current draft, the term of election campaign was decreased from 120 days to 75 days and number of electorate signatures, which the candidates have to present to the Central Election Commission for registration, was cut from 45,000 to 40,000, as well as there was put a prohibition to hold paid and free agitation on TV, radio and newspaper, financed by the government, the election fund of presidential candidates was increased from AZN 1mln and AZN 10mln and install of election centres in military units was cancelled.
The presidential elections in Azerbaijan will be held in October 2008.
Isa Gambar, leader of Musavat party, Sardar Jalaloglu, chairman of Democratic party and Mais Gulmammadov, Chairman of Green party of Azerbaijan, have already nominated their candidature to the presidential post. On 5 May, Eldar Namazov, Head of the Public forum 'For Azerbaijan, stated that he would also nominated his candidature to the presidential post. The candidature of Ilham Aliyev will be nominated from the ruling New Azerbaijan party.
According to Namazov, under the new draft, there was banned free air time in the State-run TVs. The Public channel will allocate free air time for candidates. However, the Public channel is not broadcasted through the whole territory of the country. Public channel's broadcasting covers only 60% of the country. About 40% population will not be informed about the positions of candidates. Opposition should participate in the elections although the current version of draft contrary to the democratic principals. Opposition cannot boycott the elections when there is observed retrogression and poverty in the country. The draft of amendments and supplements prove that the authorities are not sure with the results of the elections. The authorities attempt to remove some opposition from participation in the elections by adoption such a draft, Namazov said.
Sardar Jalaloglu, Chairman of the Democratic Party of Azerbaijan (DPA), told Trend that the draft of amendments and supplements into the Election Code proves that the upcoming presidential elections would be held in non-democratic conditions. "The current version of the draft into the Code does not permit to implement the freedom and transparency elections principles stated in the Constitution. Opposition should not make a compromise and boycott the elections," Jalaloglu said.
MP Mubariz Gurbanli, Deputy Executive Secretary of the ruling New Azerbaijan Party (NAP), told to Trend that the current statements by opposition were wrong. The draft of amendments and supplements into the Code basis on the international experience and carry the democratic character. The current version of the draft will make the elections mire democratic. "It is clear that the representatives of this camp understood Ilham Aliyev's victory in the upcoming elections," Gurbanli stated.
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