The Council of Europe said today that its observers at Azerbaijan’s elections yesterday had reported irregularities and cases of fraud. "On the basis of our initial findings, the elections were held peacefully, but with a certain number of irregularities and clear cases of fraud," the 38-member Council said, quoting a member of its seven-member delegation. Azerbaijan’s president Heydar Aliyev appeared to have tightened his firm grip on power after the nation voted for a new parliament and constitution. It was the first parliamentary vote since the state won independence from Moscow in 1991. (See article in "Perspective" section below.)
Pennzoil Will Explore Off Azerbaijan Coast.