A delegation of six Members of European Parliament (MEPs) were sent to Yerevan to start their election observation mission for the Armenian presidential election which was held on Monday 18th February 2013.
The MEPs worked as part of the international observation mission by Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR) and assessed whether the 2013 presidential election and the election campaigns in Armenia were held according to international standards and domestic legal practice.
The delegation was led by Mr Milan Cabrnoch, Czech Member of European Parliament from the European Conservatives and Reformists Group.
In order to gain a clean understanding and opinion of the political environment in Armenia, the team of MEPs who arrived before the election date met with a number of different groups including the main Presidential candidates, the heads of divisions within the Armenian Parliament, Armenian electoral authorities, international and Armenian election organizations, Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs), and also other media representatives and outlets.
The final election result confirmed the victory of incumbent Serzh Sargsyan (Republican Party of Armenia) who managed to secure 59% of the vote beating Raffi Hovanessian (Heritage Party) who gained 37%.
In relation to the election result the leader of the delegation Mr Cabrnoch enforced that the delegation had witnessed a calm election day, characterized by no major difficulties in electoral procedures and somewhat quiet low key election campaigns.
Mr Cabrnoch went on to state:
“Armenia has undergone two elections in less then a year, and there have been improvements in the electoral process, now, it is key that Armenian authorities deliver on important results, as regards to promoting democratic, economic and social reforms, essential for the conclusion of the EU-Armenia Association Agreement, and also for restoring faith in the future electoral processes.”
Charles Tannock, UK Conservative MEP for London and Vice President of the EU-Armenia Friendship Group stated in relation to the election result:
“Armenia witnessed a peaceful election process which suffered minor irregularities. It has made good progress on this front and is a country which is leading the way of democracy in the region.”
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