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UN Representative Remarks On Tajik Elections

3 March 2005 -- The United Nations representative to Tajikistan today said the 27 February parliamentary elections in Tajikistan show the country is in the early stages of democracy.

Speaking today to RFE/RL, Vladimir Sotirov also expressed concern over the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's assessment of the elections -- that they fell short of international democratic standards.

"We are concerned that there have been so many violations of the law, but at the same time we do take into account the fact that these are the first elections held in peaceful conditions since the 2000 elections," Sotirov said.

Sotirov also said the UN is concerned over a statement by some Tajik political parties yesterday that they will withdraw from public office if their demands are not met.

Yesterday, two Tajik opposition parties which won seats in the parliamentary polls -- the Islamic Revival Party and the Communist Party -- said they will boycott parliament if their complaints of electoral violations are not properly investigated.

President Emomali Rakhmonov today decreed that the first session of parliament will convene on 17 March.

(RFE/RL's Tajik Service)

>For more on the elections in Tajikistan, see our dedicated "Tajikistan Votes 2005" webpage. For more on the region, see our "Central Asia" webpage.

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