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Azerbaijani opposition taking notes on Georgia and Armenia?

By M. Alkhazashvili
(Translated by Diana Dundua)
Tuesday, March 25

With a presidential election slated for autumn in Azerbaijan, analysts have warned that the political opposition in Baku may be closely observing the tactics of their Georgian and Azerbaijani counterparts, who both lost in recent disputed elections and took to the streets in protest.

“Opposition figures in Azerbaijan are taking note of the situations in neighboring states and they will mimic [the opposition in] Georgia and Armenia,” Azerbaijani analyst Mubariz Akhmedoglu said, according to the news agency Regnum.

He says the region could experience a ‘domino effect,’ as political processes in one country are reflected in others. However he also says Azerbaijan is a different case from Armenia and Georgia, given its size, oil wealth, and the fact that it has not attempted to fast track to democracy.

“We know for sure what is necessary for democracy to spread in the region. As for Georgia and Armenia—these countries are busy trying to imitate democracy, without considering that society is not ready for it,” Akhmedoglu said.