International observers: Belarus' elections are democratic and progressive

The parliamentary elections in Belarus are compliant with the law, Chairman of the Central Election Commission (CEC) of Russia Vladimir Churov told media in Minsk, ¯¥à¥€ ¥â ¥«’€.

As an international observer Vladimir Churov visited polling stations in Minsk and Smorgon. õTogether people cast their votes in line with the legislation. Voting was arranged in a very convenient way for electors. There are no violations of the Electoral Code but I think more explanatory information should be available for electors at polling stations. For example, information about how electors can fill in ballot papers,õ said the head of the Russian CEC.

He also underscored, the parliamentary elections in Belarus generally demonstrated free expression of the will of people.

The head of the Russian CEC remarked the Belarusian parliament will be formed.

International observers representing the OSCE and the CIS mentioned the democratic and progressive nature of the elections to the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of Belarus. They shared their preliminary conclusions in the Kontury (Outlines) programme broadcast by the ONT TV channel.

The observers noted the elections had been held in compliance with the Electoral Code. One of the observers said he had noticed no violations visiting polling stations. Long-term observers could get familiar with election regulations, candidate registration procedures, the state of polling stations, and composition of election commissions. The observers registered no violations in these areas.

Vladimir Pekhtin, international observer representing the Russian parliament, mentioned good legislative and technical preparations for the elections. õAt polling stations we saw other observers, a fact which points to the democracy of the elections,õ he underscored.

Opposition candidates enjoyed better treatment partaking in the elections in comparison with other candidates, BelTA learnt from Aleksei Ostrovsky, Chairman of the CIS Affairs and Compatriots Committee of the Russian State Duma, head of the State Duma delegation sent to monitor the elections in Belarus.

"Talking to members of election commissions I learnt that in some cases the law was even bent in order to let opposition candidates reach the election day,õ said Aleksei Ostrovsky. Thus opposition candidates got a distinct advantage in comparison with other candidates.

Aleksei Ostrovsky has stayed in Belarus for three days. He visited the Vitebsk and Minsk oblasts. In his words, he could watch the preparations for voting and the voting process itself at 19 polling stations of Minsk. õI saw nothing the so-called human rights campaigners have been talking about,õ he said. õI believe the elections in Belarus were held entirely in compliance with the legislationõ.

Aleksei Ostrovsky underscored he had talked to members of election commissions and regular voters. õBelarus citizens had comprehensive opportunities to get information about all candidates and could cast their votes as their heart and mind told them toõ.

According to the source, calm regular work was dominant at polling stations. õI have seen no facts able to essentially influence the election campaign,õ said Aleksei Ostrovsky. õI hope very much that observers from various Western organisations will give an objective evaluation of the elections in Belarus which unfortunately hasnõt happened beforeõ.



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