Activists Interrupt OSCE observers’ press conference in Armenia - UPDATED

Activists Interrupt OSCE observers’ press conference in Armenia - <span style="color: red;">UPDATED
# 19 February 2013 14:21 (UTC +04:00)

It was concluded by observers from the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, European Council Parliamentary Assembly and European Parliament in a statement released today in Yerevan, APA reports.

Important democratic freedoms, including the right to campaign freely, were generally respected during the campaign, observers said. The campaign was generally conducted in a peaceful manner and was well-administered, according to the observers. Important measures of transparency have been implemented, said the observers, who also noted significant efforts to improve the voter registry. Nonetheless, the mission noted, particularly at local levels, an unclear distinction between the campaign activities of the incumbent and state structures. These included misuse of administrative resources and pressure on public employees to participate in the election and campaign events. Media coverage enabled voters to inform themselves regarding the campaign

The head of the PACE observers Karin Woldseth said that the improvements were observed in the electoral process compared to the last presidential elections: “We observed improvements in some spheres, including the media.” Woldseth said some works should be carried out to achieve public confidence in the election process.

Note that, an incident occurred during the press conference held by the election observation mission of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights in the capital of Armenia. Members of "Bekum" Democracy Support Centre entered the press conference hall and urged election observers to give up initial assessment of elections.

The activists holding placards and chanted slogans like "Do not defend criminals!", “What is your cost?!”, “You become the participant of criminal regime by legitimizing the elections!”, "Go to the Devil!". The OSCE PA election observers walked out midway during the press conference.

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