TIRASPOL, September 12 (Itar-Tass) — The presidential election campaign starts in Moldova’s breakaway Dniester region on Monday.
The central election commission of the unrecognized republic will begin to accept applications from candidates for the presidential seat.
The election is scheduled for December 11.
According to the central election commission, the Dniester region’s election base increased by 5,308 voters and approved a total of 406,164 eligible voters (as of January 1, 2010, the republic’s population reached 522, 545 – Itar-Tass).
Observers from the UN, the CIS, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the EU will be invited to monitor the election.
Supreme Council speaker Anatoly Kaminsky and his predecessor on this post Yvegeny Shevchuk had already announced their intention to take part in the presidential race. Recently Kaminsky replaced Shevchuk as the chairman of the Dniester region’s largest party Renovation.
Incumbent President Igor Smirnov has been occupying this position for the past 20 years. He had made no public statements about his intention to run for presidency. However, many observers name him as favourite in the presidential campaign.
Last June the Dniester region’s parliament limited the president’s term in office to two five-year consecutive terms. However, Igor Smirnov, 69, announced earlier that new amendments to the Constitution do not encompass his previous four presidential terms and allow him to take part in the race.