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Azerbaijani Opposition Postpones Planned Protest Against Election


Azerbaijan's opposition Freedom coalition has postponed a demonstration set for Saturday to protest last month's parliamentary elections, which it says were fraudulent.

Opposition representatives set a new date of December 10 for the protest.

The government had granted permission for a protest this week - but specified a site outside the Baku city limits. The coalition has requested a city square for the new date.

Police used batons and water cannon in breaking up a demonstration last Saturday, after protest leaders exceeded the allotted time and attempted to launch a sit-in.

Meanwhile, the new parliament met for the first time and elected Ogtay Asadov as speaker. Some opposition lawmakers boycotted the vote, but Mr. Asadov was elected with only one vote cast against him.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe says the election failed to meet international standards.

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