The Azerbaijani President`s Aide for Public and Political Affairs Ali Hasanov has said enough observers arrived in the country to monitor the parliamentary elections.
“The voting is being monitored by over 500 international observers, as well as observers representing local political parties,” Mr Hasanov told journalists as he cast his ballot in the parliamentary elections. “I believe that there will not be any serious violations. Naturally, no one is insured against some negative cases. Every government is doing its utmost to hold elections in a transparent, open, fair manner. I believe that we will achieve this.”
Mr Hasanov also commented on the refusal of OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) to send its observers to Azerbaijan: “It is the people of Azerbaijan who define the legitimacy of the election. If Azerbaijani electors cast their votes in an open, democratic manner and without being subjected to any pressure, and if their will then materializes in accordance with law, then this is the legitimacy criterion for us.”
The Presidential Aide said ODIHR has remained loyal to its “biased” attitude towards Azerbaijan for many years. “They send a group of 100-150 observers to Turkey, for example, which has a population of 80 million, but when it comes to Azerbaijan, where the number of eligible voters is five million out of nine million population, they want to send here a delegation of 600 or 700 man.” “First and foremost, this creates financial problems. In addition, it`s about their accommodation and other matters. We think that the number of observers is not important. The most important is satisfaction of electors and the opinion of the groups which monitor the voting,” he added.