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Statements in International Organisations


OSCE - Permanent Council No. 715: EU statement on the elections in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Statement on behalf of the European Union delivered by H.E. Ambassador Stanislav Raščan

The EU has taken note of the preliminary results of the parliamentary elections held in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia on 1 June 2008. The EU concurs with the assessment of the International Election Observation Mission, which reported that key international standards were not met. While elections offered voters a wide variety of choices and were administered well procedurally, expectations of progress were not realised because of a failure to prevent violent acts in some areas and the limited and selective enforcement of laws. Organised efforts to violently disrupt the process early on election day made it impossible for voters in many places to freely express their will.

The EU deeply regrets the violent incidents and the irregularities that occurred. The EU insists that all reported incidents be duly investigated and that action be taken accordingly. Our overall assessment of the elections will depend on the further handling and investigation of the violations identified.

We welcome the support expressed by Prime Minister and other political leaders for the rerun of elections in affected areas. It is of utmost importance that these elections be held in a peaceful, free and democratic manner. This is critical to guaranteeing their legitimacy.

At the same time, the EU welcomed the commitment expressed by all political parties during the election campaign in favour of the pro-European agenda of the country. The EU underlines that holding free and fair elections is an essential part of the political criteria of the EU accession process.

The EU encourages the leaders of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia to redouble reform efforts once the election process is fully completed and irregularities are properly sanctioned. Steps towards the opening of accession negotiations with the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia are possible as soon as the conditions set out in the December 2005 European Council conclusions are met and the priorities identified in the Accession Partnership in February 2008 are implemented.

The candidate countries Turkey and Croatia*, the countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidate countries Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Serbia, the European Free Trade Association country and member of the European Economic Area Iceland, as well as Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova and Armenia align themselves with this statement.

* Croatia continues to be part of the Stabilisation and Association Process


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Date: 24.06.2008