Azerbaijan Retains Position in List of Authoritarian Countries

Azerbaijan confidently holds its position in the list of authoritarian states, according to the research company, The Economist Intelligence Unit (UK Economist analysis unit), "Democracy Index 2012 of the world» (Democracy Index 2012).

The country is ranked in 139th place with an index of 3.15 points on the list, ahead of Rwanda, Angola, Gambia, Cameroon and even the Comoros. However, it has not yet achieved the degree of authoritarianism of Belarus, China or Kazakhstan, with the Congo only a few positions behind. The report for 2011 shows Azerbaijan won 140th place in the list of 167 countries, and came 28th out of 50 authoritarian countries. The neighbors in the region are ahead of Azerbaijan at the level of democracy: Georgia – 90th and Armenia -114th position. They are among the countries with a hybrid mode of government.

Azerbaijan lags behind on such indicators as the electoral process and pluralism, government effectiveness, public participation in politics, political culture and civil liberties.

Publishing the reports, the Moscow Center for Technology Studies reported that the index measures the level of democracy within the state and democracy, based on the methodology and results of the peer review of public opinion polls of the respective countries, characterizing the state against 60 key indicators grouped into five major categories:

1. Electoral process and pluralism.

2. Government activities.

3. Political participation.

4. Political culture.

5. Civil liberties.

This edition of the report "Democracy Index" - the fourth in a row, reflects the situation as of December 2012. The first edition of the series was released in late 2006. In the preparation of the current rating researchers analyzed 167 countries. All are assigned to one of four types of power regime:

1. Complete democracy.

2. Lack of democracy.

3. Hybrid mode.

4. Authoritarian regime.

This year, once again named the most democratic are the Scandinavian countries. First place in the world rankings is Norway with 9.93 index points. The top ten also includes Sweden, Iceland, Denmark, New Zealand, Australia, Switzerland, Canada, Finland and the Netherlands. The United States and Great Britain are at the bottom of the list with a "full democracy." The state of democracy in the United States affects the deepening polarization of political forces, and the UK, according to the authors, is suffering from a deep institutional crisis.

There are 25 countries in the category of countries with "full democracy", home to 12% of the world population. According to the results of this study, almost half of the world’s political systems can be described as democratic, but most of them (54 states) are estimated to be countries with a "lack of democracy". Of the remaining countries on the list, 37 states are a "hybrid mode" (that is, the country combines elements of democracy with elements of authoritarianism), and 51 states have "authoritarian regimes". According to these figures, more than one-third of the world's population (about 2.6 billion people) lives in conditions of authoritarian rule, most of them attributable to China.

According to the report, this year's "Global Democracy reached a dead end," in the sense that there has been no significant progress or regression in the levels of democracy in the world. However, in recent years, in many states, there has been a general downward trend in the democratic process. The global economic crisis has accentuated many previously existing negative trends in political development, especially in Europe, as well as increasing the power of authoritarian regimes around the world. The multi-year global trend of democratization, which began in 1974, has now stopped, and now there is the so-called "democratic recession." The dominant pattern in all regions of the world in recent years has been a departure from earlier progress in democratization, frustrating the democratic process and reducing confidence in political institutions, in many regions of the world, particularly in Europe. -0 –


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