ICES: Armenian presidential elections held in a democratic and competitive struggle

Alisa Gevorgyan

The International Expert Center for Electoral Systems (ICES) observed the Armenian presidential elections in 134 polling stations. They recorded both positive and negative phenomena. US representative Lidia Lowson said the working conditions in some precincts were not comfortable, there were problems with electricity and ink. She stressed, however, that the electoral processes were mostly peaceful.

Czech Representatives of the Expert Center Anna Churdova has been following the electoral processes in Armenia since 2003. “The Armenian people have passed a hard, but good path of democracy and creation of civil society in the course of ten years,” she said, particularly emphasizing the improvement of the legislative field.

The Czech observer said she was impressed by the organization of the voting of people with serious vision problems.  According to her, not all European countries pay attention to the issue.

Having summed up the results of monitoring in 134 polling stations, ICES concludes that “the presidential elections of February 18, 2013, were held in a democratic and competitive struggle and correspond to the principles and requirements of international law.”

ICES President Alexander Tsinker said: “The Mission notes with satisfaction that no disorders were registered in the electoral process, no one took steps to distort the electoral process and the findings. The recorded frauds had a slight influence on the transparency of the electoral process. Thus, we consider that the presidential elections were legitimate and democratic and were conducted in compliance with the Electoral Code of the Republic of Armenia.”

Alexander Tsinker said he appreciated yesterday’s statement of the candidates that people were the winners in the poll. “Although the incumbent President has received more than half of the votes, the high percentage collected by the opposition candidate should be a yellow card to the President,” Alexander Tsinker said as a political scientist, not as the head of mission.

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