Baku, Azerbaijan, April 13
By Leman Zeynalova – Trend:
Discussions on the presidential elections in Azerbaijan were held at the Expert Council of Baku Network.
The discussions were attended by Elkhan Alasgarov, PhD, head of the Expert Council of the Baku Network, Deputy Director General of Trend News Agency Lina Vaitkeviciene and Editor-in-chief of Azernews newspaper Sevil Mikayilova.
Elkhan Alasgarov said that the main factors of Azerbaijan’s development are the correct foreign policy line, internal stability and the unity of the people.
“I think that the next period of Ilham Aliyev’s presidency will be successful as in previous years. Once again we congratulate the president on his victory,” he added.
Sevil Mikayilova, for her part, said that people voted for Ilham Aliyev to see further development of Azerbaijan.
“The election situation in the country was very positive, very fair. As the international observers, who came to Azerbaijan to observe the elections noted, there was no shortcoming during these polls. Azerbaijan has sent an invitation to all international organizations and 894 international observers were here present. They were very delighted with the conditions created here for voters. The conditions were very fair, everyone was free and there was no pressure. At the same time, people went to the polling stations just to vote for their future and this is very obvious,” she said.
Further, talking about Azerbaijan’s achievements on the international arena, Mikayilova noted that the international rating of the country is very high.
“Azerbaijan has hosted numerous large-scale international events over these years and at the high level. I want to mention the Eurovision song contest held in Azerbaijan. Azerbaijan hosted a very large-scale international event – the European Games, which for the first time took place in a Muslim country which was very remarkable. After two years, Azerbaijan hosted Islamic Solidarity Games,” she said.
Mikayilova pointed out that Azerbaijan is well represented both in the Islamic Cooperation Organization and in the Council of Europe, which is not so easy task to have very good representation at these two very different organizations.
She noted that Azerbaijan is implementing large-scale regional projects, which are important not only for the country, the region, but Europe as well.
"Why people voted for Ilham Aliyev? Because they want these good changes, these positive tendencies to continue. They voted for the future, they want these developments to go far. They want the future generations to live in safety and security. They want this progress to continue,” Mikayilova concluded.
Lina Vaitkeviciene noted that by voting for Ilham Aliyev, the Azerbaijani people voted for stability and safety.
“I think the results were predictable. All the generation, who are now 40-50 and older, remember the hardships in the first years of Azerbaijan’s independence and they value what they have today: safety and stability. Despite the fact that the country is in the conflict, it is safe and stable and people value it. Especially, in our days, when we see so many conflicts around the world, safety and stability is very important. I think it is one of the main factors why Ilham Aliyev was elected. I could say that people voted here for their safety and stability,” she said.
Vaitkeviciene noted that another factor which play a role in the victory of President Ilham Aliyev, is the development, positive changes and achievements of the country.
“There is a developed infrastructure with quality roads. Everybody can see nice buildings, renovated hospitals, renovated schools, created new jobs, growing of tourist flow. It is also obvious for everybody that there were done a lot of things for the country’s promotion. A lot of international events were organized in Azerbaijan,” she said.
Vaitkeviciene pointed out that Azerbaijan pursues a policy of diversification of economy and there are already results.
All these factors created basis for the new cadency of the president, she added.
Azerbaijan held a presidential election on April 11.
Eight candidates were registered for the election. Six of the candidates were nominated by political parties, one candidate was a self-nominee and another candidate was nominated by an initiative group.
The incumbent head of state, Chairman of the New Azerbaijan Party Ilham Aliyev has garnered 86.03 percent of votes in the election, according to the votes counted in 5,641 polling stations.
On the voting day, 5,426 permanent polling stations and 215 temporary polling stations in 125 constituencies operated in the country.
The election was observed by 894 international observers (61 organizations, 59 countries) and 58,175 local observers.
The voter turnout was 74.51 percent. That is 3,962,123 of 5,332,817 voters cast ballot in the election.