History of Azerbaijan - Independent Azerbaijan - Ilham Aliyev Presidency (2003)

Ilham Aliyev Presidency (2003)

In yet another controversial election, his son Ilham Aliyev was elected president the same year. The election was characterized by mass violence and was criticised by foreign observers. Presently, political opposition to the Aliyev administration remained strong. Many were not satisfied with this new dynastical succession and were pushing for a more democratic government. Ilham Aliyev was re-elected in 2008 with 87% of the polls, while opposition parties boycotted the elections. In a constitutional referendum in 2009, term limits for the presidency were abolished and freedom of the press was restricted.

The 2010 parliamentary elections produced a Parliament completely loyal to Aliyev: for the first time in Azerbaijani history, not a single candidate from the main opposition Azerbaijan Popular Front or Musavat parties was elected. The Economist scored Azerbaijan as an authoritarian regime, placing it 135th out of 167 countries, in its 2010 Democracy Index.

Repeated protests were staged against Aliyev's rule in 2011, calling for democratic reforms and the ouster of the government. Aliyev has responded by ordering a security crackdown, using force to crush attempts at revolt in Baku, and refusing to make concessions. Well over 400 Azerbaijanis have been arrested since protests began in March 2011. Opposition leaders, including Musavat's Isa Gambar, have vowed to continue demonstrating, although police have encountered little difficulty in stopping protests almost as soon as they began.

On 24 October 2011 Azerbaijan was elected as a non-permanent member to United Nations Security Council. The term of office began on January 1, 2012.

Read more about this topic:  History Of Azerbaijan, Independent Azerbaijan

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