Snap parliamentary elections in 2020 did not meet international standards for free and fair competition. Monopolization of political and economic powers in the hands of the ruling Aliyev family increased, and the consolidation of authoritarian rule continued.

The conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan over Nagorno-Karabakh escalated in 2020. After receiving support from its ally Turkey, Azerbaijan launched an armed offensive, which resulted in a military victory but also created a very fragile geopolitical configuration in the region.

The economic downturn after the fall of oil prices and the pandemic’s beginning in 2020 have exposed deep economic vulnerabilities in the existing system. Despite some progress in diversifying the economy, the country’s economy is still hugely dependent on fuel prices.

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