Following an official invitation from the Ministry of Affairs of the Republic of Belarus, and based on the findings and conclusions of the OSCE/ODIHR Needs Assessment Mission conducted from 16 to 18 July, the OSCE/ODIHR has deployed an election observation mission (EOM) to the 23 September 2012 parliamentary elections.
The OSCE/ODIHR EOM, headed by Mr. Antonio Milošoski, began work on 21 August. The EOM has a core team of 11 international staff at the head office in Minsk, drawn from 8 OSCE participating States. Thirty-six long-term observers arrived and were deployed in teams of two throughout the country.
The mission will assess these elections for their compliance with OSCE commitments and other international standards for democratic elections, as well as national legislation. Observers will follow campaign activities, the work of the election administration and relevant state institutions, implementation of the legislative framework, and the resolution of election disputes. As part of the observation, the EOM will conduct comprehensive monitoring of the media.
ODIHR will request 270 short-term observers to be deployed immediately prior to the elections. They will be deployed throughout the country in multinational teams of two to monitor the opening of polling stations, the voting, the counting of ballots, and the tabulation of results.
After the elections, ODIHR will issue a statement of preliminary findings and conclusions at a press conference. A final report on the observation of the entire electoral process will be issued approximately eight weeks after the end of the observation mission.
Co-operation with partners
The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly is planning to deploy an observer delegation for these elections. The OSCE Chairperson-in-Office has appointed Mr. Matteo Mecacci as Special Co-ordinator to lead the OSCE short-term observer mission.
ODIHR has observed elections in Belarus since 2001, most recently the 2010 presidential elections.