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Tajik Presidential Candidates Reject OSCE Criticism

Campaign banners adorn the streets of the Tajik capital, Dushanbe, on October 29.
DUSHANBE -- Five presidential candidates in Tajikistan have rejected an OSCE report that criticized state-controlled media for focusing their coverage solely on incumbent Emomali Rahmon.

The interim report by the OSCE's election observation mission, issued on October 22, found that the campaign materials of the other five candidates were not visible.

The candidates -- Ismoil Talbakov of the Communist Party, Olim Boboev of the Economic Reforms Party, Tolibbek Bukhoriev of the Agrarian Party, Saidjafar Ismonov of the Democratic Party, and Abdukhalim Ghafforov of the Socialist Party -- told RFE/RL after the OSCE statement that the ongoing election campaign is proceeding in a "fair and transparent way and in accordance with Tajik laws."

Earlier this month, Human Rights Watch (HRW) criticized Tajik authorities for creating obstacles that prevented the united Tajik opposition's presidential candidate, Oinihol Bobonazarova, from successfully registering for the November 6 vote.