Azerbaijani governing party to develop proposals to bill on ex-presidents

Azerbaijan, Baku, April 2 / Trend , A.Huseynbala/

The governing New Azerbaijan Party (NAP) will submit proposals on a bill on the status of ex-presidents.

"Ex-presidential status concerns individuals whose terms expired. This status can also concern individuals who resigned due to health or other reasons, or who died in office," NAP Deputy Executive Secretary Siyavush Novruzov told Trend on April 2.

The amendments to the Constitution which passed after the March 18 referendum envisage providing official status to ex-presidents. A bill must be developed and submitted to parliament for this purpose.

Azerbaijan has had four presidents since the country declared independence in 1991 - Ayaz Mutallibov, Abulfaz Elchibay and Heydar and Ilham Aliyev.

It is impossible to give ex-presidential status to individuals who are the subject of a lawsuit or were dismissed from office, Novruzov said.

"This is my position. I will insist on this while discussing the bill," Novruzov said.

The NAP was established by Nakhchivan Parliamentary Speaker Heydar Aliyev in 1992.

President Ilham Aliyev is the party's chairman. The party has ruled the country for 16 years.

"Ex-presidential status should be given to all individuals except those who were impeached," opposition Aydinlar Party Chairman Gulamhuseyn Alibayli told Trend on April 2.

The bill should also include ex-leaders who resigned, he said.

The Aydinlar Party founding congress took place on Dec. 14.

Mutallibov was elected president in 1991-1992. He left for Russia when the Popular Front of Azerbaijan came to power after a coup d'etat in May 1992. Mutallibov has lived in Moscow for 17 years. He is the co-chairman of the Azerbaijan Social Democrat Party.

Elchibay led the national freedom movement in the late 1980s. Hee was elected president in 1992 and resigned in 1993. Elchibay left for his native Kalaki village in Nakhchivan. He then returned to Baku in 1997. He died at Turkey's Gulhane Medical Academy on Aug. 22, 2000 after a long bout with illness.

Heydar Aliyev came to power in May-June 1993. National leaders had to officially invite Aliyev to the country. He was elected chairman of the Azerbaijani Supreme Council on June 15, 1993. Aliyev began executing presidential authority after a parliamentary decision on July 24 that year.

Aliyev was elected president in Oct. 3, 1993. He was re-elected after gaining 76.1 percent of the votes in the Oct. 11, 1998 election. Aliyev agreed to run for president on Oct. 15, 2003, but withdrew his candidacy due to health problems.

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