OSCE Parliamentary Assembly to send more than 400 observers 16:19, 01/02/2006
The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly plans to send more than 400 observers to monitor Belarus` presidential election coming next month, Uta Zapf, head of the Assembly`s Working Group on Belarus, told reporters in Minsk on Wednesday.
The observers will arrive in Belarus shortly before the main polling day, March 19, for short-term monitoring, while a 14-person long-term observation mission is expected to get down to monitoring the presidential race as early as February 6, according to the German MP.
In addition, she said, the vote will be observed by members of the parliaments representing the OSCE participating states.
Ms. Zapf stressed that the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly considers it extremely important that the election is held in a free and fair manner. The OSCE representative said she had urged the country`s central election commission to grant ballot-access to all contenders left in the race.