MOSCOW, November 29 (Itar-Tass) —— A total of 649 international observers have been accredited to monitor parliamentary elections in Russia on December 4, chairman of the Russian Central Election Commission Vladimir Churov said on Tuesday.
According to Churov, these observers were delegated from the missions of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the Council of Europe, the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), and the Northern Council. Apart from that, heads of election commissions from more than 20 world nations have also been invited to monitor the elections in Russia, Churov added.
He also reiterated that international observers will monitor early voting in remote and hard-to-reach areas of Russia’s Far Eastern Khabarovsk territory. Earlier, the chairman of the Russian Central Election Commission invited representatives from mission of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and the Commonwealth of Independent States to visit such localities. “So, delegates from these missions will do that,” he added.
Churov also said that the full list of international observers will be posted on the Central Election Commission’s website on December 2.
The chairman of the Russian Central Election Commission also reminded that the Russian legislation is among world’s rare ones that regulate the rights and liabilities of international observers.
“It is a must to observe their rights but we should not forget that international observers, along with domestic observers, have certain liabilities,” he stressed.
According to the chairman of the Russian Central Election Commission, observers are to have permits of local election commissions to make photo or video coverage of balloting at polling stations. In his words, more than once he saw international observers “rushing brassily to polling stations with cameras at the ready.” He noted that under the current rules, international observers are required to introduce themselves to the local election commission and show their accreditation cards.
He also expressed concern over reports about “two fake written rules of behavior for observers” and called to display due vigilance.
Russia will elect a new, sixth, State Duma, or lower house of the national parliament, on Sunday, December 4.