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Azerbaijani Students Picket Over Test Results

BAKU -- About 500 high school students and their parents have protested in front of the Education Ministry, RFE/RL's Azerbaijan Service reports.

The students were protesting their failing grades on the nation's centralized graduation testing, with some students attributing their failure to errors on the examination and others saying they were failed for refusing to pay bribes.

Ministry officials said they will look into all the complaints individually.

The students will have to retake the exams next year.

Education Minister Misir Mardanov reported that 77 percent of the test-takers passed the exam and will be given graduation certificates, a higher completion rate than in 2008.