Monday, April 06, 2009

UNIVERSITY: Harriman: Dynasty and Democracy in Azerbaijan - The Referendum Abolishing Presidential Term Limits

Date: April 15, 2009 from 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm EDT
Location: Columbia University
Morningside Campus
International Affairs Building, Room 1219
Contact: For further information regarding this event, please contact Alla Rachkov by sending email to .
Info: Click Here to Visit Website.

The Harriman Institute presents a lecture entitled, "Dynasty and Democracy in Azerbaijan: The Referendum Abolishing Presidential Term Limits."

Khadija Ismayilova (Chief of Baku Bureau of RFE/RL)
Emin Milli (Co-Founder, AN Network, Azerbaijan)

Lincoln A. Mitchell (Columbia University)

This March, Azerbaijan voted to abolish term limits for its current president. This referendum occurred in a climate of increased repression and weakening democratic institutions. Azerbaijan is one of many countries in the former Soviet Union which are moving more towards illiberal presidential systems and has joined Belarus, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan in eliminating term limits as a means for leaders to hold on to power.

Azerbaijan's enormous oil reserves make it a key country for both Europe and the U.S.

Khadija Ismayilova - Chief of Baku bureau of RFE/RL. Before joining RFE/RL, Ms. Ismayilova worked for over ten years in journalism, holding editor positions with several Azerbaijani newspapers and, as a reporter, covering politics and the economy for such publications as Echo, Caspian Business News,, Washington Times, BBC, Deutche Welle, Voice of America and Radio Liberty. Ms. Ismayilova has written on the human rights situation in both Iran and Azerbaijan, on oil and the economy, and internal and regional politics. She was awarded the H.B. Zardabi Prize by the Azerbaijani Journalists Union for her articles on Internal and International Politics in 2001. In addition, Ms. Ismayilova teaches investigative journalism at the ICFJ Journalism School in Baku.

Emin Milli is the co-founder of AN Network, a network of young civic activists in Azerbaijan, established in 2005. He is one of the authors and organizers of the campaign - "Future Is What You Do Now" which worked with the Azeri government to establish and design a program to send 5 000 Azerbaijani students to the study abroad. Emin Milli has worked before as a coordinator of International Republican Institute (IRI) in Azerbaijan (1999-2000), as a director of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation (FES) in Azerbaijan (2002-2004). As a consultant and legal expert he was advising the Council of Europe (CoE) in matters concerning political prisoners in Azerbaijan in more than 40 cases (2002 -2004).

This event is co-sponsored by the Saltzman Institute.

This event is free and open to the public.
No tickets, no registration necessary.
Seating is on a first come, first served basis.

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