People in the Central Asian nation of Tajikistan have voted overwhelmingly to reelect the country's longtime authoritarian president for another seven-year term in office, election officials said on Monday. Preliminary results of Sunday's presidential election gave Emomali Rahmon a landslide victory with 90.9 per cent of the votes, Tajikistan's election commission said after counting all the ballots. Officials also reported a high voter turnout — over 85 per cent.
Rahmon, 68, has ruled Tajikistan since 1992, when the country was immersed in a civil war that erupted after the collapse of the Soviet Union. A 2016 constitutional referendum eliminated presidential term limits, allowing him to run for office as many times as he wishes. This year, Rahmon ran for office alongside four other candidates, all of whom were seen as token opponents unlikely to pose any significant challenge for him.
No election in Tajikistan has ever been deemed free and fair by Western election observers.