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World Briefing / AZERBAIJAN

President wins in flawed landslide

October 17, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

The president of oil-rich Azerbaijan won reelection by a landslide in a vote boycotted by opposition parties, and European monitors said the ballot failed to meet international standards.

With 70% of precincts counted, President Ilham Aliyev won 89% of Wednesday's vote, Central Election Commission chief Mazahir Panahov said.

Aliyev, who has led the Caspian nation of 8 million people since 2003, faced six opponents. But the country's top five opposition parties boycotted the vote, saying they were not allowed to campaign freely and pointing to the government's history of closing independent media and imprisoning opposition figures.

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