The ODIHR Election Observation Mission and the Ombudsman release their reports on the Armenian Parliamentary Elections
“The election campaign was vibrant, competitive and largely peaceful, with a few isolated violent incidents. Electoral Code provisions aimed at ensuring equal opportunities for all contestants with regard to campaign venues and poster space were generally respected. At the same time, the campaign was marked by lack of confidence by the public and many stakeholders in the integrity of the electoral process and allegations of electoral malpractice, especially vote buying.”
“The legal framework unduly restricts the right to file election-related complaints. This and the manner in which election commissions and courts dealt with election complaints often left stakeholders without effective consideration of their claims… Election commissions and courts in general took an overly formalistic approach to handling complaints, frequently dismissing complaints on technicalities or without examining their core substance or relevant evidence.”
Excerpts from Ombudsman’s Ad-hoc Report
“The most positive evaluation during the election was given to media coverage of the Elections by the interested entities and observer organizations. They state the media’s unprecedented progress as compared to all the previous elections in the country. The media gave opportunities to all candidates and political parties to present their views, ideas and programs.”
“The 2012 elections significantly and positively differed from the previous elections, when mass vote stuffing, fraud during the vote counting, violence, and multiple voting existed. The most concerning of all the violations registered in the 2012 election was distribution of electoral bribes. According to some parts of society, cases of electoral bribes were widespread. Despite this opinion, there is no substantial evidence supporting that view. The majority of the hundreds of registered complaints on electoral bribes was viewed as unreliable by the law enforcement bodies. The law enforcement bodies have the responsibility to reveal the actual volume of distribution of electoral bribes, yet the Police and Prosecutors work in almost all the above-mentioned cases was consistently and extremely inadequate. Such limited enforcement cannot prevent cases of electoral bribes during the next elections and reduces public confidence towards those authorities and the election outcome.”
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