The Supreme Court of Azerbaijan yesterday upheld the Central Electoral Commission’s decision to refuse registration of the Musavat party’s slate of candidates for the upcoming legislative elections. The CEC found that approximately 10 percent of the voters’ signatures in support of the slate were not authentic. On October 26, the Supreme Court similarly upheld the CEC’s decision to deny registration to the Azerbaijani Communist Party’s slate and also to most communist candidates in single-mandate constituencies. Both parties had appealed to the Supreme Court to overturn the CEC’s rulings. The CEC has thus far registered nine party slates, including president Heydar Aliyev’s Yeni Azerbaijan party and the main opposition party, the Popular Front, for the November 12 elections to the Milli Majlis. (10)
The Musavat party is one of the claimants to the Social-Democrat mantle in Azerbaijan. The Communist Party advocates the reconstitution of the USSR with the inclusion of Azerbaijan. At least a dozen small parties grouped in the opposition Round Table will also be unable to contest the elections for failure to gather the required number of voters’ signatures in their support. These developments render largely academic the issue of a boycott of the elections, which the Round Table parties had come close to announcing prior to the CEC’s decisions.