Election Monitoring and Democracy Studies Center (EMDS) and Volunteers International Cooperation Public Union (VIC) conducted long-term observation of the first stage of the 9 October 2013 Presidential Elections (10 August-14 September) of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

The monitoring of this stage, which included the pre-election environment and process of nomination and registration of candidates, was carried out in 89 election constituencies and nationwide.

Information reflected in this report is collected from 32 long-term observers, presidential candidates and their campaign headquarters, members of election commissions and voters and verified by both organizations.

Despite some technical improvements in the process of preparation to the elections, observers noted abuse of administrative resources and lack of improvement with regard to pre-election environment. EMDS and VIC note with concern that legal framework stipulated by the current Election Code and situation of political freedoms prior to the elections, particularly freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association, create more restricted pre-election environment in comparison with previous elections.

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