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CEC Chair: ODIHR did not rebuke Belarus election until final report

12-30-2010 10:13 AM CET | Politics, Law & Society

Press release from: BelTA

MINSK, 27 December (BelTA) – It was the first time the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights voiced no discontent with Belarus election until their final report was released, said Chairperson of the Central Election Commission (CEC) of Belarus Lidia Yermoshina in an interview with the ONT TV Channel on 26 December, BelTA has learnt.

“There were no critical remarks until the morning of 20 December,” Lidia Yermoshina said. In her opinion, the OSCE/ODIHR mission assumed too much authority. Even the developers of the concept in the early 1990s could not imagine that the OSCE would come up with a kind of mechanism of state control. The CEC Chairperson underlined, “They undertake punitive functions. It is beyond the very idea of international observation. It is interference with domestic affairs.”

Furthermore, the ODIHR monitors the election according to its own standards and predominantly in the former USSR countries, except for the Baltic States. If not the observation, the organization would not be able to write anything in its annual report. Lidia Yermoshina pointed out that the organization ignores the observance of other human rights, not related to election.

She noted that the record high number of almost 40,000 domestic observers monitored the recent election. The so-called independent observers were often delegated by some organizations. Most of them were driven by financial interests, as these organizations received the relevant grants, “the more violation reports, the more money.” The CEC Chairperson added that there were even threats on part of some observers. This is why Lidia Yermoshina believes that their discipline should be toughened and some duties should be introduced.

The CEC Chairperson reminded that representatives of the opposition were admitted to precinct election commissions for the first time. Most of them did not complain and agreed with the vote count. More than that, one of them sent a compliment letter to the CEC.

On 24 December the Central Election Commission of Belarus announced the final results of the presidential election that took place on 19 December. Incumbent president Alexander Lukashenko was re-elected by winning 79.65% of the vote.

Grigory Kostusev won 1.97% of the vote, Aleksei Mikhalevich 1.02%, Vladimir Nekliaev 1.78%, Yaroslav Romanchuk 1.98%, Vitaly Rymashevsky 1.09%, Andrei Sannikov 2.43%, Nikolai Statkevich 1.05%, Viktor Tereshchenko 1.19%, Dmitry Uss 0.39%. 6.47% of those, who took part in the election, voted for “none of the above”.

Belarusian Telegraph Agency (BelTA) is Belarus' biggest news agency providing the latest news about politics, economy, sports, culture and everyday life in Belarus. BelTA's reporters operate in Belarus, Moscow, Kyiv, Chisinau, Warsaw, Vilnius, Caracas.
Among other things BelTA products include the weekly 7 Dnei (7 Days), which circulation approaches 40,000 copies, and Economy of Belarus Magazine, a quarterly in Russian and English, with the audience of 6,500 readers. Moreover, BelTA publishes books, brochures, posters, booklets and other promotional materials. BelTA promotes, designs and provides technological and informational support for webpages of government agencies, Belarusian enterprises and organizations.

Aleksei Fomich, Deputy Editor of the Translations Department (English), Central Release Office, Belarusian Telegraph Agency BelTA
26 Kirova Street, Minsk, 220030, Belarus

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