Publication: Monitor Volume: 1 Issue: 133

President Heydar Aliyev and his Yeni (New) Azerbaijan party look set for a landslide victory in Azerbaijan’s first post-Soviet general elections, held November 12 (see the November 13 Monitor). According to Central Electoral Commission preliminary estimates the next day, voter turnout was approximately 80 percent, with Aliyev and the ruling party garnering some 70 percent of the votes cast. In the concurrent referendum, the country’s new constitution apparently won approval by a similar margin. Preempting the foreign monitors’ verdict, the Popular Front and other opposition groups charged fraud. On the eve of the election thousands of demonstrators in neighboring Iran had Azeris to reject the draft constitution, on the grounds that it makes no reference to Islam as the official religion and provides for the separation of religion and state. (22)

The reaction in Iran suggests that Azerbaijan’s relations with its southern neighbor will remain uneasy. Iran resents the Aliyev government for its secular orientation, its policy of opening the Caspian oil wealth to the West, and its relationship with Turkey. It is also concerned that an oil-rich and westward-looking Azerbaijan may prove attractive to the population of Iranian Azerbaijan.

1. UPI, November 14

2. Reuter, November 14

3. Itar-Tass, November 13

4. Reuter, November 13

5. Itar-Tass, November 13

6. BNS, November 13

7. Krestyanskaya Rossiia, No. 44, November 13-19, 1995

8. Segodnya, November 10; Reuter, November 13

9. Reuter, November 13

10. Russian TV, NTV, Itar-Tass, November 11-13

11. Segodnya, November 10 and NTV November, 12

12. Itar-Tass, ORT, November 12 and 13

13. Kommersant-daily, Segodnya, Nezavisimaya gazeta, Izvestiya, November 13 and 14

14. Itar-Tass, November 11

15. Segodnya, Nezavisimaya gazeta, November, 10

16. Reuter, November 13

17. Interfax-Ukraine, November 11 and 12, Reuter, Ukrainian TV, November 12

18. Ukrainian Radio, November 11

19. Moskovskii komsomolets, November 3

20. Ukrainian Weekly, No. 46, November 12, 1995

21. Ukrainian TV, November 12

The Monitor is a publication of the Jamestown Foundation. It is researched and written under the direction of senior analysts Jonas Bernstein, Vladimir Socor, Stephen Foye, and analysts Ilya Malyakin, Oleg Varfolomeyev and Ilias Bogatyrev. If you have any questions regarding the content of the Monitor, please contact the foundation. If you would like information on subscribing to the Monitor, or have any comments, suggestions or questions, please contact us by e-mail at, by fax at 301-562-8021, or by postal mail at The Jamestown Foundation, 4516 43rd Street NW, Washington DC 20016. Unauthorized reproduction or redistribution of the Monitor is strictly prohibited by law. Copyright (c) 1983-2002 The Jamestown Foundation Site Maintenance by Johnny Flash Productions