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20 Dec 2016

Belarus’ CEC to prepare proposals for implementation of OSCE/ODIHR recommendations by 1 February

MINSK, 20 December (BelTA) – Proposals for the implementation of the OSCE/ODIHR recommendations will be prepared in Belarus by 1 February, BelTA learned from Chairperson of the Belarusian Central Election Commission (CEC) Lidia Yermoshina.

The CEC interagency expert group and the Central Election Commission will study the recommendations of the ODIHR and prepare a document (a report to the President) regarding the implementation of these recommendations. “We will prepare the proposals together with all other stakeholders by 1 February,” Lidia Yermoshina said.

The OSCE/ODIHR recommendations issued after the elections to the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the sixth convocation were discussed at a working meeting between Lidia Yermoshina and the heads of the OSCE mission to observe the parliamentary elections in Belarus. Special Coordinator of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) short-term observer mission, Vice President of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly Kent Harstedt, Head of the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission Cayetana De Zulueta Owtram also met with the CEC expert group and took part in its session.

At the meeting with Lidia Yermoshina the heads of the OSCE mission presented the final report on the parliamentary elections in Belarus. Kent Harstedt and Cayetana De Zulueta Owtram drew attention to the key aspects of the recommendations they would like to be taken into account as Belarus improves the election legislation. In particular, these are the procedures of vote count and the formation of election commissions. “The Central Election Commission voiced its position on these and other issues and specified what recommendations, in our opinion, can be taken into account in the future and what recommendations are unreasonable,” Lidia Yermoshina said.

For example, the Central Election Commission views the proposal to allow legally incapacitated persons to vote as unreasonable. The Central Election Commission is also skeptical about the recommendation not to include people in the voting lists on the election date if they had not been included before due to any reasons. “We believe that it is a serious restriction for voters, therefore we will never accept this recommendation,” Lidia Yermoshina stressed. At the same time, the Central Election Commission is ready to consider all reasonable recommendations, she concluded.

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