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CIS delegation calls Kazakh elections open and honest

January 15, 2012, 17:12 UTC+3

Seven parties participate in the ahead-of-time parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan

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ASTANA, January 15 (Itar-Tass) — Delegation head of the CIS Interparliamentary Assembly and first vice-speaker of the Russian Federation Council upper chamber Alexander Torshin gave a high appraisal of the elections to the lower chamber of the national parliament, now in progress in Kazakhstan.

“Nowhere in the Western world there are such elections as in Kazakhstan, utterly open and honest,” said Torshin on Sunday, replying to an Itar-Tass question. According to the Russian senator’s assessment, Kazakh election legislation is one of the best in the CIS territory.

Besides, Torshin emphasized that the republican election system amassed rich experience last April at the elections of the country’s president, while “parties, participating in the poll, are interested in the elections passing utterly honestly”.

Torshin admitted that CIS representatives and Western observers have different approaches to monitoring elections. “We and Western observers have a very great difference in approaches. They send experts, and we -- deputies and senators who passed themselves election cycles,” he said, replying to Itar-Tass.

He reproached Western colleagues that they unwillingly establish contacts and share information and sometimes “come already with ready-made forms of accounts”. “We witness sometimes a desire to use observation as an institute of political pressure,” Torshin underlined.

He specially pointed to importance that international observers should operate within their competence and should not assume the status of publicity men. “Their main aim is to monitor elections with respect to their conformity to national legislation rather than to attempt to change operating laws,” Torshin stressed.

At the same time, he reckons that “missions of international observers at elections are necessary”. In the Russian senator’s opinion, “election commissions should determine a real number of international observers”.

Seven parties participate in the ahead-of-time parliamentary elections in Kazakhstan. According to changes made in legislation, from now on, at least two parties are to be represented at the lower chamber of the national parliament.

The republic holds simultaneously regular elections to local bodies of self-government.

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