US Embassy in Belarus: Violations during local council elections should be investigated
The US Embassy calls on the Belarusian authorities to carry out an “open and unbiased” the facts of violations during the local council electoral campaign.
As BelaPAN learnt from the press service of the American diplomatic mission, as far as the embassy knows, there have been reports about violations on the election day and during the electoral campaign. In particularly, there were reports about “harassment of and pressure on independent candidates, restrictions during electoral campaign, violations at early voting and vote count, restrictions of activity of local and international observers.”
“If the complaints are found grounded, the local elections can be a lost opportunity for Belarus and its people,” the US Embassy says.
The diplomatic mission reminded about a constructive decision of the Belarusian leadership on invitation of representatives the OSCE/ODIHR, NGOs, and political parties in spring 2009 to discuss how the Belarusian electoral legislation can be brought in line with the international and European standards.
Unfortunately, the cooperation ended as suddenly as it had begun. The Electoral Code was adopted without public discussions, the Embassy notes.
The American diplomats expressed a hope that the constructive dialogue started in spring 2009 would be continued ahead of the next elections and would be open and transparent