EU to observe elections in Pakistan
The European Union, in response to an invitation by the Pakistani author ities, is deploying an election observation mission to observe the General Elections of 11 May.
Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affa irs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the Commission, has nominated Michael Gahler MEP as C hief Observer for this mission. Mr Gahler was also the EU's Chief Observer for the 2008 elections in Pakistan and has participated in a number of other observation missions.
Catherine Ashton said: “The forthcoming parliamentary elections in Pakistan will be a his toric moment for the democratic development of the country as they mark, for the first time, the transition of power from one elected government to the next. I hope that all t hose involved will engage in the process in a peaceful and democratic way. As part of our long-standi ng support to the democratic process in Pakistan, and following an invitation from the authorities, I have decided to deploy an EU Election Observation Mission. I am confident that, under the l eadership of MEP Michael Gahler, this EOM will enhance the confidence of Pakistani voters in the proce ss.”
Mr Gahler will arrive in Islamabad on 7 April. A core team of eleven EU election analysts has been deployed in Pakistan from 2 April. They will gradually be joi ned by 52 long-term observers and 46 short-term observers from 27 EU member states, as well as from Norway, Switzerland and Canada. Altogether, about a hundred EU observers will be in the count ry for the forthcoming elections.
Shortly after Election Day, the mission will issue a prelim inary statement of its initial findings at a press conference in Islamabad. The mission will remain in Pakis tan to observe the final counting of votes and any complaint procedures, and to prepare a full report including recommendations to improve the electoral process.
FOR FURTHER DETAILS:
Michael Mann +32 498 999 780 - +32 2 299 97 80 - Michael.Mann@eeas.europa.eu
Maja Kocijancic +32 498 984 425 - +32 2 298 65 70 - Maja.Kocijancic@ec.europa.eu
Sebastien Brabant +32 460 75 09 98 - Sebastien.Brabant@ec.europa.eu