A1 Plus | 22:08:11 | 04-11-2004 | Politics |

OSCE OBSERVERS' VIEW ON US ELECTIONS

The 2 November elections in the United States were conducted in an
environment that reflects a longstanding democratic tradition, including
institutions governed by rule of law, free and professional media and an
active civil society involved in all aspects of the election process.

The elections mostly met OSCE's commitments for democratic elections,
agreed to by the 55 OSCE participating States, concludes the Election
Observation Mission of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in
Europe (OSCE). The Mission focused primarily on election reforms,
particularly the implementation of the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) of 2002.

"The high turnout indicates the importance of this election for the
electorate and the strong democratic tradition in this country. Although
it was not possible for our observers to access polling stations in all
states, due to lack of provision in federal or state legislation, it
appears that the voting and the processing of ballots proceeded in an
orderly manner," said Barbara Haering, Vice-President of the OSCE
Parliamentary Assembly and Special Co-ordinator of the OSCE
Chairman-in-Office for the Short-Term OSCE Observation Mission.

The Mission was deployed by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions
and Human Rights (ODIHR) and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. It
published its preliminary findings today, based on the work of 92
observers from 34 countries, including 56 parliamentarians.
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