2020 Tajik presidential election

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2020 Tajik presidential election

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  Emomali Rahmon in 2016 (cropped).jpg Rustam Latfzod.jpg
Nominee Emomali Rahmon Rustam Latifzoda
Popular vote 3,853,987 128,182
Percentage 92.08% 3.06%

President before election

Emomali Rahmon

Elected President

Emomali Rahmon

Presidential elections were held in Tajikistan on 11 October 2020.[1][2][3][4] The result was a fifth straight victory for authoritarian long-term incumbent Emomali Rahmon of the People's Democratic Party, who was re-elected with over 90% of the vote. Rahmon was inaugurated for his fifth term on 30 October. He was sworn in at a ceremony at the Kokhi Somon Palace in Dushanbe.[5]

Electoral system[edit]

The President of Tajikistan is elected for a seven years term using the two-round system; if no candidate receives over 50% of all votes cast,[6] a second round is held between 15 and 31 days later between the two candidates who received the most votes. For the result to be validated, voter turnout must exceed 50%; if it falls below the threshold, fresh elections will be held.[7]

Candidates are required to gather and submit signatures from 5% of registered voters in order to run in the elections.[7]


In power as President since 1994,[8] incumbent president Emomali Rahmon could seek a new term in office. It was speculated that his son Rustam Emomali or a close ally could run if he did not.[1] No election in Tajikistan has been judged as free and fair since its independence from the Soviet Union,[8] and Tajikistan is described by international media as an authoritarian state.

In 2019, a retired doctor named Quvvatali Murodov sought to challenge Rahmon and suggested that "the authorities drop restrictions that make it difficult to run for the presidency".[1]

In 2019, Sharofiddin Gadoev, a leader of the banned opposition movement Group 24, said that he had been abducted in Russia and brought to Tajikistan. He reported that his captors told him Rustam Emomali would take part in the 2020 election.[9]

On 3 September 2020, Faromuz Irgashev, a 30-year-old lawyer from Tajikistan’s eastern Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Region (GBAO), announced his intent to run for the presidency via a YouTube video.[10] He linked his decision to run to witnessing police abuse in Khorog and GBAO more widely.[11][12]

After speculations about whether Rahmon's son Rustam would stand as presidential candidate, finally Rahmon was nominated by his party in a party congress on 3 September 2020.[13] Previously, he was also nominated by the Federation of Independent Trade Unions congress in 26 August and by the Union of Tajikistan's Youth.[14]

In 14 September, the Central Election Commission (CEC) announced that five men have been registered as candidates in this election: Rustam Latifzoda (Agrarian Party), Abduhalim Ghafforov (Socialist Party), Miroj Abdulloyev (Communist Party), Rustam Rahmatzoda (Party of Economic Reform), and Rahmon himself (People's Democratic Party).[15] Irgashev's candidacy was rejected by the CEC because he didn't submit his registration by the deadline.[16] All of the approved candidates generally espouse pro-government positions.


Prior to elections, on 6 October there were reports of protests in the capital Dushanbe. One protester said "Protest actions and rallies of those dissatisfied with the results of the presidential elections in Tajikistan are impossible," referring to ongoing protests in Belarus and Kyrgyzstan that may spill over into Tajikistan.[17]


A foregone conclusion, incumbent president Rahmon won re-election, allegedly with over 90% of the vote. Just as with prior elections, the election was not deemed to be free or fair.

Emomali RahmonPeople's Democratic Party3,853,98792.08
Rustam LatifzodaAgrarian Party128,1823.06
Rustam RahmatzodaParty of Economic Reforms90,9182.17
Abduhalim GhafforovSocialist Party63,0821.51
Miroj AbdulloyevCommunist Party49,5351.18
Valid votes4,185,70498.75
Invalid/blank votes53,1351.25
Total votes4,238,839100.00
Registered voters/turnout4,961,18885.44
Source: CEC, Adam Carr


  1. ^ a b c Catherine Putz (29 January 2019). "Tajikistan 2020: What to Watch as Tajikistan Approaches an Election Year". The Diplomat. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  2. ^ "Tajikistan". Freedom House. 2018. Archived from the original on 30 January 2020. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  3. ^ Luxmoore, Matthew (7 November 2019). "Its Media Muzzled, Tajikistan Prepares To Extend Ruling Family's Grip On Power". RFE/RL. Retrieved 24 July 2020.
  4. ^ "Presidential elections in Tajikistan to be held on October 11". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. 6 August 2020. Retrieved 6 August 2020. (in Russian)
  5. ^ "Emomali Rahmon is sworn in as the President of the Republic of Tajikistan – Embassy of Tajikistan in Malaysia". Retrieved 2021-11-01.
  6. ^ Elections in Tajikistan: November 6 Presidential Elections: Frequently Asked Questions IFES
  7. ^ a b Elections in Tajikistan: November 6 Presidential Elections: Frequently Asked Questions IFES
  8. ^ a b Catherine Putz (9 January 2020). "Security at the Core of Senior US Diplomat's Visit to Tajikistan". The Diplomat. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  9. ^ "Tajik Activist Says He Was Pressed To Back President's Son In 2020 Election". Radio Free Europe. 7 March 2019. Retrieved 30 January 2020.
  11. ^ "Will Emomali Rahmon Have Any Serious Challengers for the Tajik Presidency?". The Diplomat. 9 September 2019. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  12. ^ "Tajikistan: 30-year-old unknown makes presidential run to fight police abuse". EurasiaNet. 4 September 2020. Retrieved 12 September 2020.
  13. ^ "Tajikistan's Ruling Party Officially Nominates President Rahmon To Run For Sixth Term". Radio Free Europe. 3 September 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  14. ^ "Tajikistan: President Rahmon confirms new run for office". EurasiaNet. 26 August 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  15. ^ "Tajik President Rahmon, Four Other Men Registered As Presidential Candidates". Radio Free Europe. 14 September 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  16. ^ "Field Set for Tajik Election, No Surprises". The Diplomat. 15 September 2020. Retrieved 15 September 2020.
  17. ^ Эксперт оценил риск протестов после президентских выборов в Таджикистане RIA Novosti, 6 October 2020