International observers evaluate critically elections in Azerbaijan
International observers evaluate critically elections in Azerbaijan

OSCE and Council of Europe observers evaluate critically elections in Azerbaijan. They made a joint statement today.

As Frank Schwabe, Head of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) delegation told Georgian First Channel, no free and fair elections were held in Azerbaijan.

“As you know, we were observing the whole process, including the degree of media freedom. Also, whether the opposition has the opportunity to run in the elections? We are worried about political prisoners, some have been released but they have not been allowed to run. As for Election Day, it was disappointing. Counting procedures raised concerns. There were many problems at the precincts. In my opinion, the elections in Azerbaijan were not fair and free”, – Frank Schwabe said.

Peter Tejler, Head of the ODIHR election observation mission also speaks about the violations.

“We have seen many flaws. It should be noted that many of the old recommendations, including those concerning freedom of assembly and expression as well as the environment, have not been taken into account and implemented. We cannot say whether the elections were fair and free. We have a broader methodology. We have to analyse many points. We will continue to receive data and record them in the final report”, – Peter Tejler said.

As OSCE Parliamentary Assembly Mission Coordinator Artur Gerasymov told the First Channel, despite a large number of registered candidates, the violations of counting procedures raised serious concerns.

“This is a preliminary assessment. The detailed report will be published later. At this stage, we can say that the system utilised during the elections worked well in some cases. But the counting process yielded very poor results”, – Artur Gerasymov said.

The snap parliamentary elections was held yesterday in Azerbaijan.