EU Deploys 60 Observers For Kosovo Elections

Author : Mircea Birca | Tuesday, May 27, 2014
Posted in category Balkans, Kosovo
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Despite the untroubled nature of last year’s elections, international monitors will still be a prominent force in the June 8 elections to ensure that the democratic process is followed. 

The European Union will deploy over 60 observers to monitor the national elections in Kosovo on June 8, while other international missions are planning to send more monitors.

Marian Gabriel, the Deputy Chief Observer, said there was still a need for monitors in Kosovo. “Election observation not only deters electoral malpractice but can also improve public confidence in the electoral process,” he told Balkan Insight.

“Our mission here can also be seen in the context of the EU’s continued support for the Belgrade-Pristina dialogue and for inclusive and transparent elections in Kosovo,’ he added.

Apart from the EU, the US embassy in Pristina has also pledged to deploy several observers across Kosovo.

The total number of national and international observers remains unclear as there is still time to be certified as an observer by the Central Election Commission in Kosovo.

Since the end of the war in Kosovo, elections have been routinely monitored in Kosovo owing to concerns about fraud.

In 2013, local elections in Kosovo were held for the first time in the Serb-majority northern areas.

The European Union set up a mission to observe elections in Kosovo during the November and December 2013 polls under Roberto Gualtieri, Member of the European Parliament.

The team comprised eight election experts with an additional 20 long-term observers and 42 short-term observers from all EU member states. This year’s elections will follow the same format.

For this year’s elections, Demokracia në Veprim -DnV (Democracy in Action) a local NGO has partnered with Handikos to ensure that individuals with special needs have the opportunity to participate in elections. DnV has trained around 2,800 observers to follow the elections and 350 are expected to serve those with special needs.

 

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