Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev was on course for a landslide re-election win, an exit poll showed, in a vote he called early after recapturing the region of Nagorno-Karabakh from Armenia. According to the tentative results, the siting president Ilham Aliyev secured 93.9% of the vote.
The polling started at 8 am and continued till 7 pm without any break. The Central Election Commission had made elaborate arrangements to ensure that the elections are held in a free and transparent manner.
The international observers visited various polling stations and observed the election process. The Pakistan delegation, including this scribe, also visited more than 10 polling stations and interacted with the polling staff as well the voters. The Pakistani delegation deeply appreciated the warm hospitality extended to them throughout the entire exercise.
The bond between Pakistan and Azerbaijan, forged during their shared challenges in the conflict with Armenia, was evident in the overwhelming support from the Azerbaijani people. The moment the locals learned about the Pakistani delegation’s presence, they expressed their gratitude with a heartfelt standing ovation, echoing the solidarity and friendship between the two nations.
The gesture resonated not only with the polling staff and local observers but also with the voters, creating a memorable and meaningful connection between the two nations. Before the Patriotic War, Pakistan was relatively unknown to most Azerbaijanis, with only a handful of people, particularly the elderly, being familiar with it.
However, in the aftermath of the war, the awareness of Pakistan has significantly increased, and now, nearly every Azerbaijani, regardless of their age group, recognizes and acknowledges the country. It is no coincidence that Pakistan is one of the first states to recognize the independence of Azerbaijan after Azerbaijan declared its independence.
Pakistan whole-heartedly supported Azerbaijan in its Patriotic War against Armenia, in which the valiant Azerbaijani forces inflicted sheer defeat upon the Armenia forces and liberated its territories occupied by Armenia. In a demonstration of unwavering solidarity, Azerbaijan wholeheartedly stands by Pakistan in the Kashmir issue.
Strengthening the bond between the two nations, Azerbaijan has initiated direct flights from Pakistan to Azerbaijan, marking yet another milestone in their flourishing bilateral relations. This move not only fosters greater connectivity but also underscores the mutual commitment to deepening diplomatic and people to people ties and fostering cooperation between the two countries.
Meanwhile, candidates who participated in the presidential election of the Republic of Azerbaijan – Gudrat Hasanguliyev, the Chairman of the Whole Azerbaijan Popular Front Party, Fazil Mustafa, the Chairman of the Great Establishment Party, Elshad Musayev, the Chairman of the Great Azerbaijan Party, Razi Nurullayev, the Chairman of the National Front Party, as well as independent candidates Zahid Oruj and Fuad Aliyev – made phone calls to President Ilham Aliyev, who won the election with the great trust of the people of Azerbaijan.
Each candidate sincerely congratulated the re-elected President of the Republic of Azerbaijan on his resounding victory in the democratically, transparently, and fairly conducted election. They emphasized that the results of the voting were a clear expression of the Azerbaijani people’s confidence and trust in their head of state, as well as a manifestation of the high value and support given to the country’s resolute policies towards socio-economic development and the welfare of its citizens.
The President of the Republic of Azerbaijan thanked them for their congratulations. The head of state positively evaluated the demonstration of a political culture based on constructive dialogue among the candidates participating in the presidential election and noted that a number of proposals voiced by the candidates during the pre-election campaign process will be taken into consideration.