2018

IFES-OPORA Updates Joint Paper on Legal Reform Priorities for Elections, Referendums and Political Finance

Kyiv, June 20, 2018

IFES and Civil Network OPORA prepared an updated version of the “Legal Reform Priorities for Elections, Referendums and Political Finance” paper, which addresses changes that have occurred since June 2017 and identifies the urgent election-related priorities that must be implemented at least one year before the October 2019 Parliamentary Elections, as necessitated by international standards and best practices.

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Promo-LEX and Civic Coalition criticize new accreditation process for observers in Moldova

Chişinaú, June 19, 2018

Promo-LEX, EPDE member organisation from Moldova, and several other members of the Civic Coalition call the urgent repeal of CEC Decision no. 1694 of 12 June 2018, complicating the election observers' accreditation and activity. The Signatory Organizations have also expressed their profound disappointment with the eroding of democracy in Moldova,
after 40% of the votes on Chisinau mayor elections were invalidated.

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Recommendations for Improvement of Electoral Environment by ISFED

Tbilisi, June 14, 2018

ISFED, together with GYLA and TI-Georgia presented a package of priority recommendations for improvement of electoral environment in Georgia. The two packages of recommendations cover the issues of political party finance and regulations in the Election Code to improve various aspects related to campaigning, misuse of administrative resources, election administration composition, electoral disputes, etc.

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EPDE experts at European Parliament: mixed election system promotes corruption

Brussels, June 7, 2018

EPDE and four of its member organisations (ISFED, Promo-LEX, OPORA, CVU and HCA Vanadzor) took part in the Euronest Conference on electoral reform in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova. During the event, several EPDE speakers highlighted that one of the main challenges for electoral reform in Ukraine, Georgia and Moldova is the mixed election system, since the majoritarian element of the mixed system is prone to vote-buying.

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Severe sanctions against four members – EPDE contributed to disclosure

Strasbourg, May 18, 2018

The Committee on Rules of Procedure of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has found that four of its members have "seriously breached" the Code of Conduct of the organisation, and ruled that all four should be temporarily deprived of a number of rights in the Assembly, including the right to observe elections. EPDE contributed to the investigation of this body and welcomes this decision. 

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By-elections of self-government in Zugdidi: Introduction of electronic technologies

Tbilisi, May 14, 2018

On May 13, EPDE's Georgian member the International Society for Fair Elections and Democracy (ISFED) was monitoring the municipality Sakrebulo by-elections in Tsaishi local majoritarian electoral district of Zugdidi Electoral District no.67, through 3 precinct and 1 district electoral commission observers and 1 mobile group.The main novelty introduced in the 13 May 2018 elections was piloting of machines for electronic counting of votes (e-counting). 

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Media coverage of EPDE's listing as "undesirable" in Russia

Berlin, May 7, 2018

On 13 March 2018, the European Platform for Democratic Elections (EPDE) was classified as "undesirable organizations" by the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation. EPDE protested against this decision and was supported by a number of international organisations. Several international key media report on the recent developments.

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EPDE Policy Alert - Electoral Reform in Ukraine #6

Kyiv, April 26, 2018

On 4 April, the Parliamentary Committee on Legal Policy and Justice confirmed the composition of a working group assigned to prepare the second reading of the draft Electoral Code No. 3112-1. The draft Electoral Code advocates a proportional system for parliamentary elections with open regional party lists. 

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EPDE Policy Alert - Electoral Reform in Ukraine #5

Kyiv, April 19, 2018

The draft law, which proposes to introduce amendments to the Criminal Code, the Code of Administrative Offences, and the national and local electoral legislation, aims to address impunity and to improve the current flawed enforcement system for electoral crimes by harmonizing legislation and strengthening sanctions for election violations.

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Kremlin-friendly election observers from Europe and US at the presidential elections in Russia

Moscow, April 16, 2018

While Russia’s Central Election Commission published a list of foreign observers present at the presidential elections, it refused to publicise the names of the foreign observers invited by the Federal Assembly. However we have identified 160 foreign observers who monitored the presidential election in Russia (125 observers out of 439). 

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Censorship and manipulation: How the media affected the outcome of the election in Russia

Moscow, April 16, 2018

Networks of different media under the authorities’ control participated in the manipulative coverage of the election campaign—they set certain "frameworks" through which the individual candidates were to be perceived. These media all used the same patterns, forming a carnivalized, scandalous image of opposition candidates.

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Foreign observation of the illegitimate presidential election in Crimea in March 2018

Moscow, April 3, 2018

Reputable monitoring organisations did not send any missions to observe the Russian presidential election in Crimea held on the 18th of March 2018. Aiming to give domestic and international legitimacy to the election in Crimea, the Russian authorities invited 43 foreign observers, out of which we have identified 35. 

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Belarus after the local elections: Is the revival of the Belarusian electoral system possible?

Berlin, March 14, 2018

During the round-table meeting, organized in Berlin on 14 March by ZOiS and EPDE, the experts of the campaign "Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections" will discuss whether the reanimation of the electoral system can take place before the election in Belarus in 2020 and will look at the challenges of German-Belarusian relations in this context.

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Golos investigation on how pseudo-public organizations simulate civic participation in Russian elections

Moscow, March 5, 2018

The simulation of the political process in Russia today looks like a conscious strategy whose goal is to replace real political activity in elections. Such substitution can become a serious challenge not only for the institution of elections, but for the entire civil society in the country.

 

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Kyiv Dialogue in the regions

Lviv, March 2, 2018

In December 2017, the Kyiv Dialogue was accompanied in the regions by the film crew. Within the framework of the anti-corruption conference in Lviv, this short film shows how tireless efforts of activists, coordinators and participants from all over the country contribute to a better future for Ukraine.

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Perspectives for EU-Russia relations

Brussels, February 28, 2018

At this conference the ALDE Group is going to present and discuss its “Blueprint for an EU Strategy towards Russia”, which outlines how a more active EU should engage to get Moscow to respect international law and also its human rights obligations laid down in the Russian Constitution.

 

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Local elections in Belarus: Final report

Minsk, February 21, 2018

The electoral process did not comply with a number of key international standards for democratic and free elections. This is evidenced by the lack of equal access to the media for all candidates, the absence of impartial electoral commissions, numerous cases of voter coercion to participate in early voting, and opacity of some election procedures for observers.

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EMDS Statement on the scheduling of the early Presidential Election

Baku, February14, 2018

The Election Monitoring and Democracy Studies Centre (EMDS) analysed the legal-political environment in connection with the scheduling of the early Presidential Election in Azerbaijan on 11 April 2018 and concluded that although the presidential decree on bringing the election to a earlier date is in line with the Constitution and the Election Code of the country, it is against the principles of democratic constitutionalism and periodicity of elections.

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Golos: More than half of the 121 recommendations of OSCE/ODIHR on elections have not been implemented

Moscow, January 26, 2018

More than half of the 121 recommendations of OSCE/ODIHR on elections have not been implemented. Golos analysed the reports of the organization following the results of five federal elections in Russia from 2003 to 2016. The worst situation can be found in the regulation of agitation and media work: only six out of 25 recommendations were implemented to some extent.

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Position of the Batory Foundation’s Teams of Experts on the Act of Law amending the Electoral Code

Warsaw, January 31, 2018

The Batory Foundation wishes to express a deepest concern, and to draw attention to the threats connected with the change of electoral rules implemented by the Act dated 11th January 2018 on the amendment of certain acts of law in order to enhance the citizens’ participation in the process of electing, functioning and controlling certain public bodies.

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New Golos report on the nomination of candidates for the Presidential election

Moscow, January 26, 2018

According to the report, a positive change compared to the 2012 presidential elections is a significant reduction in the required number of signatures to be collected by candidates in support of their nomination. However the legal inequality of candidates from parties represented in the State Duma as opposed to candidates from other parties (as well as self-nominated candidates) remains unchanged.

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Local elections in Belarus: Report on monitoring the registration of candidates for deputies

Minsk, January 24, 2018

According to the report, a total of 22,713 candidates for local councils of the twenty-eighth convocation have been nominated, which almost equals the number nominated during the last local elections of 2014 (22,784). Most candidates were nominated by citizens through signature collection — 15,172, which represents 66.8% of the total number of nominees, labor collectives — 5,356 (23.6%), political parties — 813 (3.6%).

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EPDE Policy Alert - Electoral Reform In Ukraine #4

Kyiv, January 24, 2017

The fourth issue of the “EPDE Policy Alert - Electoral Reform in Ukraine” analyzes the controversial Draft Law No. 7366 which advocates to replace the current mixed electoral system with a fully majoritarian system. The introduction of an exclusive first-past-the-post voting system, as proposed in Draft Law No. 7366, would fundamentally contradict the goals of Ukraine’s Revolution of Dignity and the commitments of the coalition.

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