Azerbaijan will hold snap polls on Sept. 1 upon the request of President Ilham Aliyev, a decree published Friday said.

Aliyev was himself re-elected in early presidential elections in February with 92% of the vote.

The parliamentary elections, for 125 seats, were due to take place in November, but the country will be holding the U.N. World Climate Summit (COP29) at that time.

The oil and gas-rich country of around 10 million inhabitants is regularly criticized for its human rights record.

Azerbaijan is a significant supplier of fossil fuels to the European Union.

Aliyev has been president of Azerbaijan since 2003, when he took over from his father, Heydar. He remains massively popular and routinely receives over 85% of the vote in elections.

Azerbaijan was not due to hold presidential elections until 2025, but Aliyev moved the polls forward after Baku reclaimed control of the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh in September.

Karabakh, which is internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan, was occupied by ethnic Armenian forces since a lengthy war in the early 1990s. The occupying forces along with a majority of the population fled after Azerbaijani forces re-established control.

For Azerbaijan, the victory was a triumph that heralded what Aliyev called “a new era” for his country. Armenia, however, labels the defeat as a national tragedy with over 120,000 people reportedly displaced.

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