INA - BAGHDAD
European Union - EU announced on Monday, that it has decided to deploy an Election Observation Mission (EOM) to observe the legislative elections scheduled in Iraq for 10 October, in response to an invitation by the Independent High Electoral Commission (IHEC) in Iraq.
The High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice-President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell, has appointed the Member of the European Parliament, Viola Von Cramon-Taubadel, as Chief Observer of this EU Electoral Observation Mission, according to a statement by EU received by the Iraqi News Agency (INA).
The mission will produce a public report with recommendations, based on an objective assessment of the campaign and the voting, with a view to help in further improving the electoral framework in Iraq, included the statement.
“I am glad that responding to Iraq’s request, the European Union will deploy its first ever Election Observation Mission to the country. I just visited Iraq and discussed the importance of these polls. We want to support the strengthening of Iraqi democracy through Iraqi-led and Iraqi-owned inclusive and participatory elections. Our observation mission is a clear manifestation of solidarity and support to the Iraqi people and of our solid partnership with Iraq,” said High Representative/Vice-President Josep Borrell.
On her part, the Chief Observer Viola Von Cramon-Taubadel said, “I am proud to have been appointed Chief Observer of the EU EOM for the Iraqi elections in October. These polls will be an important milestone in Iraq’s democratic build-up. A peaceful and secure run up of the electoral process is the key to ensure that all candidates, political activists, journalists, human rights defenders and the electorate can fully exercise their democratic rights and freedoms. This will be a key for the success of these important elections,”
The core team of the EU EOM consists of 12 election experts who arrived to Baghdad and Erbil on 28 August as in mid-September, 20 long-term observers will join the mission and will be deployed in different areas of the country.
During Election Day, the mission will be reinforced with local short-term observers coming from EU Member States’ diplomatic missions present in Iraq. The EU EOM will remain in the country until the completion of the electoral process, including counting and appeals, included the statement.
In line with the EU’s election observation methodology, the mission will issue a preliminary statement and hold a press conference in Baghdad after the elections.
The final report, which will include a set of recommendations for future electoral processes, will be presented and shared with stakeholders after the finalization of the entire electoral process.