PACE election observer's confusing tweet
Two days before the snap presidential election, a member of the PACE monitoring mission put out a tweet which has puzzled many Azeris.
On 9 April, Stefan Schennach, co-rapporteur of PACE’s election monitoring mission to Azerbaijan, tweeted that he would be meeting with “the candidates for president: 8 candidates, one woman from social democratic Party.”
Eight candidates are running in the snap presidential election in Azerbaijan, but they are all men, including the candidate from the Social Democratic Party, Araz Alizadeh.
Schennach’s tweet provoked disdain from several Twitter users. Political scientist Arastun Orujlu wrote: “After this tweet I can only imagine what sort of observation your team is going to conduct.”
The candidates in today’s presidential election are:
- President Ilham Aliyev (New Azerbaijan Party)
- Araz Alizadeh (Social Democrat Party)
- Faraj Guliyev (National Revival Movement Party)
- Hafiz Hajiyev (Modern Musavat Party)
- Gudrat Hasanguliyev (United People’s Front of Azerbaijan Party)
- Sardar Jalal oghlu Mammadov (Democrat Party)
- Razi Nurullayev (Azerbaijan Democratic Republic Initiative Group)
- Zahid Oruj (independent)
In February, Ilham Aliyev issued an order unexpectedly moving the elections up six months from October to April. The move has been criticized as an attempt to prevent the opposition from mounting a strong campaign. The main opposition parties in Azerbaijan have called for a boycott of the election.
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