Azerbaijani Leading Opposition Party Not Change its Decision Regarding Presidential Elections

Azerbaijan, Baku, 10 June / Trend corr. E.Babayev / The opposition Musavat party did not change its decision regarding participation in the upcoming presidential elections. "This issue was discussed in the party Assembly, as well as the participants of the meeting took a decision to confer the issue in the organizations of the party," Arif Hajili, Head of the Central Executive Administration of the party, told Trend .

The draft of amendments and supplements into the Election Code was passed by the Parliament on 30 May. The draft on the changes includes ban on the canvassing in the state-owned media sources, and rise in the deposit account of the candidates from AZN33,000 to AZN300,000. The terms for the signature collection has been shortened from 35 days up to 10 days, cancellation of candidate's registration was eased as a result of the changes to the Code of Administrative Violations. These changes have caused discontent in the opposition.

The presidential elections in Azerbaijan will be held in October 2008.

The Azadlig bloc, that unites three opposition parties - Popular Front, Citizen and Development and Liberal, have stated that the bloc would boycott the upcoming presidential elections. 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.

Hajili stated that Musavat would participate in the upcoming presidential elections. Furthermore, the issue regarding the international forum that Musavat plans to hold in Baku, was also been discussed in the meeting. "The 90th anniversary of establishing of the Azerbaijani Democratic Republic was marked in 2008, and therefore we declared 2008 the year of Republic. For this purpose we will hold the international forum from 22 to 24 June," Hajili said.

Opposition party Musavat was founded in 1992. Isa Gambar, the present Chairman of the Party was the Ex-Speaker of the Azerbaijani Parliament (Milli Majlis) in 1992-1993 and the candidate nominated to the Presidential elections held in the country in 2003. Five MPs represents the Party in the Parliament of the Country.

The correspondent can be contacted at: [email protected]

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