Azerbaijani Authorities can Fulfill Some Opposition Demands: Opposition Leader
Azerbaijan, Baku, 23 June / corr. Trend E. Babayev/ The oppositional Azadlig bloc of Azerbaijan has not yet made a final decision on boycotting presidential elections. "The Majlis of the bloc will adopt a final decision to boycott elections soon," Shovkat Hajiyeva, the co-founder of Bloc and leader of the National Unity Movement said to Trend .
The presidential elections in Azerbaijan will be held on 15 October 2008. The chairman of the Musavat party Isa Gambar, chairman of Azerbaijan Democratic Party Sardar Jalaloglu, chairman of the Green Party Mais Gulaliyev and chairman of the public forum For Azerbaijan Eldar Namazov have decided to participate in the presidential elections. Several days ago, political scientist Eldar Namazov stated that he would run for presidency independently. At its meeting, to take place in near future, Governing New Azerbaijan Party (NAP) will nominate country's current President Ilam Aliyev. The Azadlig bloc, which unites three opposition parties -Popular Front party, Citizen and Development party and Liberal party, will boycott the presidential elections.
According to Hajiyeva, there is undemocratic pre-election atmosphere in the country. Therefore, there is apathy in both society and political scene. "The changes and supplements to the Election Code cast doubts on the democratic conduct of the elections. Shortening election campaign from 120 days to70 days and banning election campaign in the state-owned media sources further aggravated the pre-election situation," he said. "These changes have not been approved by President yet. The government can fulfill some of our demands," she said. "My party has raised the issue of releasing political prisoners and journalists and providing conditions for the activities of the political parties. If these demands are fulfilled, the Bloc can consider its decision on boycotting elections," she added.
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