Early Thursday, the Central Election Commission announced that Aliyev received 86 percent of the votes, with 92 percent of the districts reporting. Of his seven other challengers, the self-proclaimed candidate Oruc led Zahid Maharram 3.11 percent of the vote, and Hasanguliyev Gudrat Muzaffar of the Azerbaijan Party came in third with 3.04 votes. The turnout was 75 percent.
The results closely matched the initial vote in this oil-rich Caspian land. Aliyev won 85.57 percent of the vote, according to a survey of renowned US pollster Arthur J. Finkelstein & Associates, which ran more than 14,000 personal interviews nationwide.
Election observers largely praised the electoral process. The European Conservatives and Reformists Group, one of the largest political groups in the European Parliament, said in a statement on Thursday that the election process was "appropriate and in line with international standards and practices".
At a press conference in Baku British MEP David Campbell Bannerman said the elections were conducted "professionally and fairly and in a transparent environment".
He was particularly impressed with the security measures, from the use of IT and indelible ink to security cards. "Unlike the European elections, there was no absentee ballot or powers that could cause security problems," Campbell Bannerman said, adding, "Security measures are better here than in the UK."
In a separate statement the election observation mission of Spain Fundació Llibertat i Democràcia called the elections "calm and peaceful". The delegation pointed out that voters' electoral participation and the transparency of voting and counting procedures demonstrate the progress made in the technical reforms that have helped to increase the efficiency of the electoral process in Azerbaijan Observers, including nearly 900 international delegates, the election.
SOURCE Central Electoral Commission of the Republic of Azerbaijan