ODIHR seeks to cast doubt on results of presidential election in Azerbaijan: SAM
Baku, Azerbaijan, April 14
The Center for Strategic Studies under the President of Azerbaijan (SAM) has issued a statement on the biased conclusions of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on the presidential election held on April 11.
Assessing the preliminary report prepared by the election observation mission of the OSCE/ODIHR, OSCE PA and PACE as the biased, SAM called on to put an end to defamation policy directed against Azerbaijan and free choice of the country's citizens.
"Particularly, the Center would like to highlight that during the election campaign all conditions were created for all eight registered candidates, favorable conditions were also created in accordance with the Electoral Code for voters to freely express their views and will," the statement reads.
Furthermore, the democratic rights, as well as the right to freedom of assembly of political parties that refused from participating in the presidential election were guaranteed, according to the Center.
The Center further stressed that the presidential election in Azerbaijan was in focus of attention of a number of international organizations, more than 60,000 local and international observers. In addition, the country created conditions to directly observe the electoral process through hundreds of web cameras installed at the polling stations.
Although these international observers stated that the presidential election in Azerbaijan was held absolutely transparently and based on democratic principles, the observation mission of the above-mentioned European structures, taking an obviously biased position, tried to cast doubt on the objective results of the election.
The statement reads that the injustice and bias of the report prepared in advance, deliberate distortion of the real situation also prove their prejudiced intentions.
"We once again emphasize that the presidential election held in Azerbaijan on April 11 has become an important historical stage on the path of democratic development and progress of our state and people. The Azerbaijani people have once again made its historic choice under conditions of democracy and transparency," the Center said.
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 garnered 86.03 percent of votes in the election.
The election was observed by 894 international observers (61 organizations, 59 countries) and 58,175 local observers.