Election Administration (EA) launches information campaign for ethnic minority voters. The campaign –“the voting procedure” is organized by the District Election Commissions (DEC).
The DEC Chairpersons attended the meeting held at the Central Election Commission (CEC) of Georgia. At the meeting campaign planning was discussed in details. Chairpersons of the DEC met with Sophio Sitchinava, the Head of Coordination, Planning and Reporting Department and Nino Berulava, Deputy Director of the CEC Training Center. Meeting participants talked about the accessible services for ethnic minority voters. In addition, mock election was held for the chairpersons of commissions. Information campaign – “the voting procedure” will be implemented by the DECs in the regions densely populated with ethnic minority voters.
It should be noted, that on E-day the following materials will be available for the Armenian and Azerbaijani voters living in the mentioned regions into Georgian-Armenian, Georgian- Azerbaijani and Georgian-Armenian- Azerbaijani languages, namely: ballot paper, the poster describing the polling building and procedures, the voters’ card, rule for filling the ballot paper, public version of the unified list of voters and table version of the list.
Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada, or Parliament, on Tuesday passed a resolution on non-recognition of the legitimacy of Russia’s parliamentary elections. The relevant resolution won support from 264 Ukrainian lawmakers whereas 226 votes are needed to pass a bill or a resolution.
"We think that presence in Russia’s seventh State Duma [lower parliament house - TASS] of lawmakers elected as a result of illegal elections in the territory occupied by Russian [obviously meaning Crimea - TASS] make the September 18 elections to the Russian State Duma illegitimate in general," according to the explanatory note to the document.
The resolution says that Rada lawmakers will turn to the United Nations Security Council and General Assembly, to parliaments of foreign states, parliamentary assemblies and international organizations with a "call not to recognize legitimacy of the elections to the Russian seventh State Duma." The document was initiated by People’s Front lawmakers.
Meanwhile, Ukraine’s Opposition Bloc said the resolution on non-recognition of the Russian parliamentary polls is yet another declaration "that has no applied meaning for the country." Moreover, according to the Opposition Bloc, the document "runs counter to the opinion of international organizations" which are rendering assistance to Ukraine.
The Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, a city with a special status on the Crimean Peninsula, where most residents are Russians, refused to recognize the legitimacy of authorities brought to power amid riots during a coup in Ukraine in February 2014.
Crimea and Sevastopol adopted declarations of independence on March 11, 2014. They held a referendum on March 16, 2014, in which 96.77% of Crimeans and 95.6% of Sevastopol voters chose to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the reunification deals March 18, 2014.
Despite the absolutely convincing results of the referendum, Ukraine has been refusing to recognize Crimea as a part of Russia.
Strasbourg, 15.09.2016 – A delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) was in Tbilisi on 13 and 14 September 2016 to assess the pre-electoral climate of the parliamentary elections scheduled for 8 October 2016.
The delegation*, led by Emanuelis Zingeris (Lithuania, EPP/CD), felt that there was an environment for democratic elections in the country. It saw a pluralistic political and media landscape and a working legal framework. Although the delegation felt that the general climate was clearly less tense than it was during past elections, following discussions with various interlocutors, it considered necessary to underline that all parties should denounce all forms of campaign violence and harassment of opponents and that they should publicly call upon all their supporters to refrain from any actions that could undermine the democratic character of the elections.
The delegation indeed heard allegations of unacceptable acts of violence, intimidation, harassment and blackmail directed at candidates and voters. In this context, such acts, even if isolated, against candidates, party members or supporters, as well as threats against journalists, must be prevented. Perpetrators of such acts must be identified and punished. The delegation also said that any misuse of administrative resources in the electoral campaign must not happen.
The delegation underlined that all parties should focus on the real issues and avoid questioning the election framework as a campaign strategy, as this could undermine public trust in the elections themselves.
The delegation called on all stakeholders, and in particular on the authorities, to avoid any actions that could increase the tensions in the political environment in the run-up to the elections. It expressed the hope that all political players would spare no efforts to pave the way towards building a genuine culture of education, based on mutual respect between political forces of opposing orientations.
The PACE pre-electoral delegation was in Tbilisi at the invitation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. It met with the Prime Minister, with the Speaker of the Parliament and its first Deputy, with members of the delegation to PACE, with the Chairperson of the State Election Commission, with the Minister of Internal Affairs, with the Head of the National Communications Commission, with leaders and representatives of parliamentary and non-parliamentary parties running in the elections, with representatives of civil society and the media, with the Deputy Head of the OSCE/ODIHR election observation mission and with diplomats based in Tbilisi.
A full-fledged 32-member delegation from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe will arrive in Georgia prior to the parliamentary elections to observe the vote.
We expect free and fair elections in October, 8, 2016 – this statement was made by the Prime Minister of Lower Saxony and the Vice President of European People’s Party David McAllister. According to him, 2016 Is too important for Georgia and its democracy.
David McAllister said that he supports United National Movement in this election and wished it success.
“We want to be a member of European Union so we expect fair and free elections in Georgia. I wish success to United National Movement. As a Vice President of European People’s Party, I wish Georgia to continue its implementing reforms,”- David McAllister said.
The Speaker, Mr. David Usupashvili, within the Conference “Georgia’s European Way” being held in Batumi, held the meeting with the second President of the National Council of Austria, Mr. Karlheinz Kopf.
The parties discussed bilateral relations and noted that the Austrian Embassy will open in Georgia in the nearest future facilitating to enhancement of friendly relations.
Mr. Kopf asked about EUAA implementation, upcoming Parliamentary elections and current political situation in the country, as well as NATO integration of Georgia, threats in the region and economic challenges, as well as relations with Russia and actions by Russia. Mr. Kopf introduced the Ambassador of Austria to Georgia to be appointed in Austrian Embassy in Georgia.
The Leader of the Conservators confirmed that the party will not take part independently in the elections and will be in the list of Georgian Dream.
According to Zviad Dzidziguri, the partial members had consultations and they decided to be in the united list as the representatives of the Conservators.
“This is a chance to have partial unite and be qualified party, to have the representatives in the parliament and do our job.”-Zviad Ddzidziguri said to journalists.
It is important fair and transparent elections to hold in Georgia because this is the most important thing for the future of the country – this statement was made by the US Secretary of State John Kerry before the meeting with Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili.
According to John Kerry United States recognizes the reforms implemented in Georgia:
"We recognize your reforms. It is important to hold fair and transparent elections in Georgia. Thanks for hosting "- said US Secretary of State.
“Of course, Ian Kelly is worried about nothing to happen before the parliamentary elections in Georgia”-this statement was made by the Former Prime Minister of Georgia Bidzina Ivanishvili today at the meeting with the journalists.
"I would like to respond to the statement by Ian Kelly. By the way, yesterday I had a meeting with him. I had heard the concerns of him. This fact that 3-4 months before the election is aggressive in the way of Rustavi 2 case, is not desirable. Nobody can understand us in Europe and US. This is really right position,”-Ivanishvili said.
As Ex-Prime Minister said, he didn’t like some massages in the statement of the Ambassador.
“He is critical to Nika Gvaramia. He is quite sincere. USA is the main partner of us and Ian Kelly assesses the situation in the point of view of his country. We had same polemic yesterday and I don’t agree with him but I see that he wants our country to develop in the right way,”-Bidzina Ivanishvili said.
According to the Former Prime Minister, Bidzina Ivanishvili, the National Movement will have problems for barriers in the parliamentary elections. He made this comment on the meeting with the journalists today. As he noted, he have been making researches and knows what is happening in reality.
“I think that you will have the problems with barriers in the elections. I am sure despite the researches you made. I make researches every month and I know what happening in reality,”-Bidzina Ivanishvili said to the Rustavi 2’s journalist.
US Ambassador to Georgia Ian Kelly said that the elections should held in the fair and free environment. According to him, it is important all the voters to be informed and have access on media.
"The appeal process is still going on, and as the process is not over, I specifically can’t comment yet. But I gave repeatedly said that this is an election year and it is mostly important elections to be held in democratic environment. All the voters should have access to media and should have right of free expression. That's a priority for us to hold fair elections and a free and fair media environment is essential,”-Ian Kelly said.