Participants of the Saturday rally of the opposition demanded the cancellation of the results of the early presidential elections, stating their falsification.
As the leader of the Popular Front Party of Azerbaijan (PFPA) Ali Kerimli said, once again, the authorities falsified the election. However, in his opinion, the election fraud has been exposed to the whole world, as international organizations report and the leading foreign media outlets write about this.
According to him, the authorities want to punish the opposition because of their own organizational inability. “The authorities, out of habit, did everything they could to disrupt today’s rally. Eight PFPA members were arrested on an administrative basis, and hundreds of activists were called to the police and threatened. And so they failed to prevent the participation of citizens in the action,” Kerimli said.
The leader of the Musavat party, Arif Hajili, called the early elections “elections without choice.” “The reasons for appointing early elections were not announced to the people before, during the campaign, or later. No provision was made for democratic elections. After all, and as observers from the OSCE stated, the fate of the elections was decided not only on the day of voting. There was no democratic environment in the country. There are 150 political prisoners in Azerbaijan. The media as an element of culture have been eliminated, the TV and radio is under the control of the authorities. Parties have no opportunities for equal struggle. The freedom of assembly is limited,” Hajili said.
The head of the National Council of Democratic Forces Jamil Hasanli called the elections “farce”, as they were uncontested. In his opinion, the conclusion of the international observation mission with the participation of representatives of the OSCE, PACE and the OSCE PA was a confirmation of the falsification of the elections.
Thus, as Hasanli put it figuratively, “the authorities were caught red handed at the scene of the crime.” The usurpation of power, he added, is the gravest crime against the people.
He demanded the cancellation of the election results, the dissolution of all election commissions involved in falsifications and the creation of conditions for new democratic elections.
These same requirements were put forward in the resolution of the rally. The authors of the documents said the struggle of the opposition will continue until free elections are held.
Participants of the rally periodically chanted the slogan “Freedom!”, “Resign!”, “Ilham, Go!” and showed a symbolic “red card”.
Several thousand people took part in the action.
The Baku City Police estimated the number of participants in the rally as 1,000 people. According to the police, there were no serious violations of the law.