The Election Monitoring and Democracy Studies Centre (EMDS) analysed the legal-political environment in connection with the scheduling of the early Presidential Election in Azerbaijan on 11 April 2018 and concluded that although the presidential decree on bringing the election to a earlier date is in line with the Constitution and the Election Code of the country, it is against the principles of democratic constitutionalism and periodicity of  elections.

EMDS notes with regret that the imprisonment of 140 people, including journalists, bloggers and opposition activists, on politically motivated charges, restrictions of freedom of expressions, particularly the blocking of websites of independent media outlets and widespread persecution of social media activists indicate the lack of democratic environment prior to the election. Furthermore, the crackdown on civil society launched following the 2013 Presidential Election continues and limits the opportunities for civil society to engage in voter education, protection of election rights and domestic election observation.

You can download the report here.EMDS Statement