The opinions of High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton and European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Stefan Fule are formed on basis of biased, one-sided and preconceived information that distorts the real situation with the electoral process in Azerbaijan, head of the Public and Political Issues Department of Presidential Administration of Azerbaijan, Ali Hasanov told on Thursday.
According to Hasanov, the statement of Catherine Ashton and Stefan Fule, who are concerned on the influence of some recent developments to the pre-election situation, human rights and freedoms situation and general political situation in Azerbaijan, were perceived with surprise and regret.
"We believe that their opinions are formed on biased, one-sided and preconceived information that distorts the real situation in the electoral process in Azerbaijan," he said. "We declare with full responsibility that the election campaign in Azerbaijan is carried out in accordance with the existing legislation and international practice. The conditions necessary for activity within country's legislation have been created on all stages of the electoral process for the persons who nominated their presidential candidacy. The candidates organize meetings with their voters in Baku as well as in regions easily and without any infringements of law, equally enjoy the possibilities provided them for agitation. In general the government bodies ensure the safety of the electoral process in a needed manner."
According to Hasanov, the facts of bringing individuals to responsibility in a prescribed manner for violation of legislation's requirements in recent days have nothing to do with the electoral process.
"Therefore, we consider linking the measures on elimination of law infringements with the electoral process as a biased and preconceived approach. I would like to remind that European Union's Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Stefan Fule has previously made statements that did not reflect the reality of Azerbaijan. We believe that the claims about the alleged pressure on civil society activists, representatives of the media outlets in Azerbaijan during election period are attempts to cast shadow on the free and democratic elections in general," he said.
Hasanov added that the Azerbaijani government will go on to fulfill its tasks to continue the presidential election campaign in accordance with country's legislation and international experience.
"We hope that the next opinions and statements of EU officials with regard to the elections will be more balanced and correspond to reality," Hasanov said.
Presidential elections in Azerbaijan will be held on October 9.