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Azerbaijan's Ruling Party Wants Referendum On Third Term For President

BAKU -- The ruling Yeni Azerbaycan Party (New Azerbaijan Party) has suggested that parliament vote for a referendum that would ask voters if they wanted to lift the ban on a third-term presidency in Azerbaijan.

Deputy Ali Ahmedov, who is also an executive secretary of the ruling party, has insisted on holding a parliament hearing on the issue.

Zahid Oruj, a deputy from the pro-government Ana Vatan Party, told RFE/RL's Azerbaijani Service that parliament's Law and State Policy Commission is to propose legislation about a referendum that will be ready for parliament to consider in the coming weeks.

President Ilham Aliyev was elected to his second term on October 15 for five years in an election deemed neither free nor fair by international organizations.

The proposal to lift the ban on a third term has been widely criticized by opposition parties.

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