EX-U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE MEETS WITH HEADS OF AZERI NGOs

Madeleine Albright, the former Secretary of State, the head of the U.S. National Democracy Institute held w meeting with the heads of several non-governmental organizations (NGOs) on Tuesday at Hyatt Regency hotel of Baku.

Attending the meeting were the chairman of the Confederation of NGOs, Ali Guliyev, the Director of the Independent Centers of Consultations and Assistance �For Civil Society’, Eldar Ismayilov, the Director of the Centre of

Elections Monitoring, Anar Mammadli, the representative of the Society of Women’s Rights Protection , Irada Aliyeva, the head of the Right and development Center, Hafiz Hassanov, the leader of the Research Center �East-West’, Arastun Orujlu, as well as representatives from the US embassy and the NDI.

The meeting focused on the parliamentary elections scheduled for November 2005, participation of NGOs in the elections, the pre-elections situation.

Officials of NGOs informed Albright about the pre-election situation, as well as the bar on their participation in the monitoring of the elections. Alright said that she was eager to study the opinions and proposals by NGOs until the meeting with Azerbaijani President Aliyev.

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