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new azerbaijan party

Azerbaijan’s ruling party, New Azerbaijan, has won the country’s parliamentary elections that were boycotted by the main opposition parties, the electoral commission said.

The New Azerbaijan party had won at least 70 seats in the 125-seat parliament, the commission said.

A host of small parties and candidates loyal to President Ilham Aliyev took almost all the rest.

The opposition has accused the government of jailing its opponents.

International monitors from the OSCE did not observe the vote, citing government restrictions.

Photo AP

Photo AP

More than a dozen political parties were vying for 125 seats in Azerbaijan’s National Assembly.

However, analysts say those that could be considered genuine in their opposition to the government refused to participate.

“The pre-election period was marred by massive violations. That’s why we decided not to participate,” opposition Musavat Party leader Arif Gajily told Reuters news agency.

The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the leading international monitoring group, has not considered any of Azerbaijan’s elections since independence to be free and fair.

In 2015 – for the first time in more than two decades – the OSCE chose not to send a mission, condemning the Azerbaijani government’s “crackdown on independent and critical voices”.