Azerbaijan today, 28 May, marks the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic.
At a ceremony in Baku the President of Azerbaijan layed a wreath at the monument commemorating the establishment of the first republic.
Celebrations have been taking place also in Georgia and Armenia as all three countries mark the establishment of their modern statehood in May 1918, Georgia being declared a republic on 26 May and Armenia and Azerbaijan on 28 May.
related content: Georgia celebrates 100th anniversary of first republic
The city that is the heart of Turkey returns an opposition candidate as Mayor. Many see it as a victory for democracy at a time when Turkish institutions are being tested.
David Bakradze, of the opposition European Georgia Party, has in the meantime raised the issue of Russia's return to full participation in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), which is going to be discussed at a meeting in Strasbourg this week. Bakradze said that it was not acceptable that Russia be allowed to return to PACE given its recent actions.